Abstract

We study the impact of two-photon absorption (2PA) and fifth-order nonlinear loss such as 2PA-induced free-carrier absorption in semiconductors on the performance of stimulated Brillouin scattering devices. We formulate the equations of motion including effective loss coefficients, whose explicit expressions are provided for numerical evaluation in any waveguide geometry. We find that 2PA results in a monotonic, algebraic relationship between amplification, waveguide length, and pump power, whereas fifth-order losses lead to a nonmonotonic relationship. We define a figure of merit for materials and waveguide designs in the presence of fifth-order losses. From this, we determine the optimal waveguide length for the case of 2PA alone and upper bounds for the total Stokes amplification for the case of 2PA as well as fifth-order losses. The analysis is performed analytically using a small-signal approximation and is compared to numerical solutions of the full nonlinear modal equations.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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