Abstract

A new hologram type in spectral hole-burning systems is presented. During exposure, the frequency of narrow-band laser light is swept over a spectral range that corresponds to a few homogeneous linewidths of the spectrally selective recording material. Simultaneously the phase of the hologram is adjusted as a function of frequency—the phase sweep function. Because of the phase-reconstructing properties of holography, this recording technique programs the sample as a spectral amplitude and phase filter. We call this hologram type frequency and phase swept (FPS) holograms. Their properties and applications are summarized, and a straightforward theory is presented that describes all the diffraction phenomena observed to date. Thin FPS holograms show strongly asymmetric diffraction into conjugated diffraction orders, which is an unusual behavior for thin transmission holograms. Investigations demonstrate the advantages of FPS holograms with respect to conventional cw recording techniques in frequency-multiplexed data storage. By choosing appropriate phase sweep functions, various features of holographic data storage can be optimized. Examples for cross-talk reduction, highest diffraction efficiency, and maximal readout stability are demonstrated. The properties of these FPS hologram types are deduced from theoretical considerations and confirmed by experiments.

© 1995 Optical Society of America

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