Frequency combs induced by phase turbulence

June 17, 2020

Freq comb

Frequency combs are widely-used tools for detecting and measuring different frequencies of light with unique precision. Unlike conventional lasers, which emit a single frequency, these lasers emit multiple frequencies in lockstep, evenly spaced to resemble the teeth of a comb. Today, they are used in everything from environmental monitoring and chemical sensing to the search for exoplanets, optical communications and high-precision metrology and timing. In this work just published in Nature we have harnessed turbulence in light to create a specific type of high-precision laser frequency comb, in a system previously thought incapable of producing such state. The discovery could be used in a new generation of devices for applications such as optical spectroscopy and sensing. It is an important first step in connecting Kerr microcombs and quantum cascade lasers, two key technologies for chip-scale frequency combs.

See the press release from Harvard SEAS here and the article itself here.