Abstract

We show that a quasi-steady-state photorefractive spatial soliton forms a waveguide structure in the bulk of a photorefractive material. Although the optically induced waveguide is formed by a very low-power (microwatts) soliton beam, it can guide a powerful (watt) beam of a longer wavelength at which the medium is nonphotosensitive. Furthermore, the waveguide survives, either in the dark or when guiding the longer-wavelength beam, for a long time after the soliton beam is turned off. We take advantage of the solitons’ property of evolution from a relatively broad input beam into a narrow channel and show that the soliton induces a tapered waveguide (an optical funnel) that improves the coupling efficiency of light into the waveguiding structure.

© 1995 Optical Society of America

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