Abstract

This article demonstrates a bistable optical valve in a photonic liquid crystal fiber using the thermal hysteresis effect of the phase transition between the cholesteric phase and the blue phase (BP). The attenuation is due to various scattering losses in different phases. Both cholesteric and BPs can exist stably at room temperature (RT) and can also be switched to each other using temperature-control processes. The transmission spectrum and the intensity of the guided light can be controlled with various extents of scattering loss. For optical communications, this device can be manipulated over a loss difference of 10 dB at RT and insensitive to the polarization of light.

© 2013 Optical Society of America

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