Abstract

We report the experimental observation of bistability and hysteresis phenomena of the polarization signal in a telecommunication optical fiber. This process occurs in a counterpropagating configuration in which the optical beam nonlinearly interacts with its own Bragg-reflected replica at the fiber output. The proof of principle of optical flip–flop memory and 10Gbit/s routing operation is also reported based on this polarization bistability. Finally, we also provide a general physical understanding of this behavior on the basis of a geometrical analysis of an effective model of the dynamics. Good quantitative agreement between theory and experiment is obtained.

© 2013 Optical Society of America

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