Abstract

We show that the nonlinear phase shift produced by a ring resonator constructed from a given nonlinear optical material can be greater than the phase shift produced by a single pass through an infinite length of the same material when linear and nonlinear absorption are taken into consideration. The figure of merit (defined by the phase shift times the throughput) also improves for the ring resonator over that of the native nonlinear absorbing material. We finally show that these benefits of using the ring resonator as a nonlinear phase-shifting element can enhance the switching characteristics of a Mach–Zehnder interferometer.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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