Abstract

We demonstrate heterodyne mixing of two free-running, multimode, 3.3-THz quantum cascade lasers by use of a point-contact Schottky diode. By temperature tuning the emission wavelength of one laser, a difference frequency signal spanning the 2–4-GHz range is obtained, with a signal-to-noise ratio of 30 dB. The frequency of the heterodyne signal is subject to random fluctuations of a few megahertz, principally from instabilities in the temperatures of the devices. From single-shot measurements we derive an instantaneous linewidth for a single Fabry–Perot mode of 20 kHz, corresponding to an integration time of 3.6 ms.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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  1. R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
    [CrossRef]
  2. G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
    [CrossRef]
  3. S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
    [CrossRef]
  4. B. S. Williams, S. Kumar, H. Callebaut, Q. Hu, and J. Reno, Appl. Phys. Lett. 83, 5142 (2003).
    [CrossRef]
  5. R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, and D. A. Ritchie, Electron. Lett. 39, 1254 (2003).
    [CrossRef]
  6. A. Barkan, F. K. Tittel, D. M. Mittleman, R. Dengler, P. H. Siegel, G. Scalari, L. Ajili, F. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Opt. Lett. 29, 575 (2004).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. The mixer is manufactured by Farran Technology, Ltd. [Model CM(X)-5]. For technical specifications see http://www.farran.com .
  8. W. C. B. Peatman, P. A. D. Wood, D. Porterfield, T. W. Crowe, and M. J. Rooks, Appl. Phys. Lett. 61, 151 (1992).
    [CrossRef]
  9. The frequency shift owing to the slightly different currents is negligible.
  10. D. Weidmann, L. Joly, V. Parpillon, D. Courtois, Y. Bonetti, T. Allen, M. Beck, J. Faist, and D. Hofstetter, Opt. Lett. 28, 704 (2003).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  11. The fact that, compared with the main part of Fig. 3, only one line is present in a window of 2 GHz, is a result of the random nature of the fluctuations.
  12. A. Yariv, Quantum Electronics (Wiley, New York, 1989).
  13. M. S. Taubman, T. L. Myers, B. D. Cannon, R. M. Williams, F. Capasso, C. Gmachl, D. L. Sivco, and A. Y. Cho, Opt. Lett. 27, 2164 (2002).
    [CrossRef]
  14. Sometimes, if the optical path was momentarily blocked, one of the difference frequency lines would disappear and remain missing even after the blockage had been removed. The blockage could then be momentarily reinserted, and then after its removal the line would reappear.
  15. A. Tredicucci, Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa, Italy (personal communication, March2004).

2004 (1)

2003 (5)

D. Weidmann, L. Joly, V. Parpillon, D. Courtois, Y. Bonetti, T. Allen, M. Beck, J. Faist, and D. Hofstetter, Opt. Lett. 28, 704 (2003).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

B. S. Williams, S. Kumar, H. Callebaut, Q. Hu, and J. Reno, Appl. Phys. Lett. 83, 5142 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, and D. A. Ritchie, Electron. Lett. 39, 1254 (2003).
[CrossRef]

2002 (2)

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

M. S. Taubman, T. L. Myers, B. D. Cannon, R. M. Williams, F. Capasso, C. Gmachl, D. L. Sivco, and A. Y. Cho, Opt. Lett. 27, 2164 (2002).
[CrossRef]

1992 (1)

W. C. B. Peatman, P. A. D. Wood, D. Porterfield, T. W. Crowe, and M. J. Rooks, Appl. Phys. Lett. 61, 151 (1992).
[CrossRef]

Ajili, L.

A. Barkan, F. K. Tittel, D. M. Mittleman, R. Dengler, P. H. Siegel, G. Scalari, L. Ajili, F. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Opt. Lett. 29, 575 (2004).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Allen, T.

Alton, J.

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Barbieri, S.

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Barkan, A.

Beck, M.

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

D. Weidmann, L. Joly, V. Parpillon, D. Courtois, Y. Bonetti, T. Allen, M. Beck, J. Faist, and D. Hofstetter, Opt. Lett. 28, 704 (2003).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Beere, H. E.

A. Barkan, F. K. Tittel, D. M. Mittleman, R. Dengler, P. H. Siegel, G. Scalari, L. Ajili, F. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Opt. Lett. 29, 575 (2004).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, and D. A. Ritchie, Electron. Lett. 39, 1254 (2003).
[CrossRef]

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

Beltram, F.

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, and D. A. Ritchie, Electron. Lett. 39, 1254 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

Bonetti, Y.

Callebaut, H.

B. S. Williams, S. Kumar, H. Callebaut, Q. Hu, and J. Reno, Appl. Phys. Lett. 83, 5142 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Cannon, B. D.

Capasso, F.

Cho, A. Y.

Courtois, D.

Crowe, T. W.

W. C. B. Peatman, P. A. D. Wood, D. Porterfield, T. W. Crowe, and M. J. Rooks, Appl. Phys. Lett. 61, 151 (1992).
[CrossRef]

Davies, A. G.

A. Barkan, F. K. Tittel, D. M. Mittleman, R. Dengler, P. H. Siegel, G. Scalari, L. Ajili, F. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Opt. Lett. 29, 575 (2004).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, and D. A. Ritchie, Electron. Lett. 39, 1254 (2003).
[CrossRef]

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

Dengler, R.

Dhillon, S. S.

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Evans, M.

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Faist, F.

Faist, J.

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

D. Weidmann, L. Joly, V. Parpillon, D. Courtois, Y. Bonetti, T. Allen, M. Beck, J. Faist, and D. Hofstetter, Opt. Lett. 28, 704 (2003).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Gmachl, C.

Hofstetter, D.

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

D. Weidmann, L. Joly, V. Parpillon, D. Courtois, Y. Bonetti, T. Allen, M. Beck, J. Faist, and D. Hofstetter, Opt. Lett. 28, 704 (2003).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Hu, Q.

B. S. Williams, S. Kumar, H. Callebaut, Q. Hu, and J. Reno, Appl. Phys. Lett. 83, 5142 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Iotti, R.

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

Joly, L.

Köhler, R.

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, and D. A. Ritchie, Electron. Lett. 39, 1254 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

Kumar, S.

B. S. Williams, S. Kumar, H. Callebaut, Q. Hu, and J. Reno, Appl. Phys. Lett. 83, 5142 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Linfield, E. H.

A. Barkan, F. K. Tittel, D. M. Mittleman, R. Dengler, P. H. Siegel, G. Scalari, L. Ajili, F. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Opt. Lett. 29, 575 (2004).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, and D. A. Ritchie, Electron. Lett. 39, 1254 (2003).
[CrossRef]

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

Mittleman, D. M.

Myers, T. L.

Parpillon, V.

Peatman, W. C. B.

W. C. B. Peatman, P. A. D. Wood, D. Porterfield, T. W. Crowe, and M. J. Rooks, Appl. Phys. Lett. 61, 151 (1992).
[CrossRef]

Porterfield, D.

W. C. B. Peatman, P. A. D. Wood, D. Porterfield, T. W. Crowe, and M. J. Rooks, Appl. Phys. Lett. 61, 151 (1992).
[CrossRef]

Reno, J.

B. S. Williams, S. Kumar, H. Callebaut, Q. Hu, and J. Reno, Appl. Phys. Lett. 83, 5142 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Ritchie, D. A.

A. Barkan, F. K. Tittel, D. M. Mittleman, R. Dengler, P. H. Siegel, G. Scalari, L. Ajili, F. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Opt. Lett. 29, 575 (2004).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, and D. A. Ritchie, Electron. Lett. 39, 1254 (2003).
[CrossRef]

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

Rooks, M. J.

W. C. B. Peatman, P. A. D. Wood, D. Porterfield, T. W. Crowe, and M. J. Rooks, Appl. Phys. Lett. 61, 151 (1992).
[CrossRef]

Rossi, F.

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

Scalari, G.

A. Barkan, F. K. Tittel, D. M. Mittleman, R. Dengler, P. H. Siegel, G. Scalari, L. Ajili, F. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Opt. Lett. 29, 575 (2004).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Siegel, P. H.

Sivco, D. L.

Taubman, M. S.

Tittel, F. K.

Tredicucci, A.

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, and D. A. Ritchie, Electron. Lett. 39, 1254 (2003).
[CrossRef]

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

A. Tredicucci, Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa, Italy (personal communication, March2004).

Weidmann, D.

Williams, B. S.

B. S. Williams, S. Kumar, H. Callebaut, Q. Hu, and J. Reno, Appl. Phys. Lett. 83, 5142 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Williams, R. M.

Wood, P. A. D.

W. C. B. Peatman, P. A. D. Wood, D. Porterfield, T. W. Crowe, and M. J. Rooks, Appl. Phys. Lett. 61, 151 (1992).
[CrossRef]

Yariv, A.

A. Yariv, Quantum Electronics (Wiley, New York, 1989).

Appl. Phys. Lett. (3)

G. Scalari, L. Ajili, D. Hofstetter, M. Beck, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, D. A. Ritchie, and A. G. Davies, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 3165 (2003).
[CrossRef]

B. S. Williams, S. Kumar, H. Callebaut, Q. Hu, and J. Reno, Appl. Phys. Lett. 83, 5142 (2003).
[CrossRef]

W. C. B. Peatman, P. A. D. Wood, D. Porterfield, T. W. Crowe, and M. J. Rooks, Appl. Phys. Lett. 61, 151 (1992).
[CrossRef]

Electron. Lett. (1)

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, and D. A. Ritchie, Electron. Lett. 39, 1254 (2003).
[CrossRef]

IEEE J. Quantum Electron. (1)

S. Barbieri, J. Alton, S. S. Dhillon, H. E. Beere, M. Evans, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, and F. Beltram, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 39, 586 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Nature (1)

R. Köhler, A. Tredicucci, F. Beltram, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, R. Iotti, and F. Rossi, Nature 417, 156 (2002).
[CrossRef]

Opt. Lett. (3)

Other (6)

The mixer is manufactured by Farran Technology, Ltd. [Model CM(X)-5]. For technical specifications see http://www.farran.com .

The frequency shift owing to the slightly different currents is negligible.

The fact that, compared with the main part of Fig. 3, only one line is present in a window of 2 GHz, is a result of the random nature of the fluctuations.

A. Yariv, Quantum Electronics (Wiley, New York, 1989).

Sometimes, if the optical path was momentarily blocked, one of the difference frequency lines would disappear and remain missing even after the blockage had been removed. The blockage could then be momentarily reinserted, and then after its removal the line would reappear.

A. Tredicucci, Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa, Italy (personal communication, March2004).

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Figures (3)

Fig. 1
Fig. 1

Emission spectra of laser A and laser B at heat-sink temperatures and bias currents of (TA=20 K, IA=813 mA) and (TB=25 K, IB=1600 mA), respectively. The spectra were collected with a FTIR spectrometer. The arrows indicate the pair of lines producing a beat signal within the bandwidth of the preamplifier.

Fig. 2
Fig. 2

Difference frequency spectra obtained by changing the temperature and current of LB while LA was driven with IA=813 mA at T=20 K. The baseline had a strong frequency dependence because the experiment was conducted on the lower edge of the passband of the microwave amplifier.

Fig. 3
Fig. 3

Difference frequency spectrum with LA and LB operating at the same temperatures and currents as for Fig. 2(a). With respect to Fig. 2(a), this spectrum was collected with a higher resolution bandwidth (30 kHz) and concentrates on the difference frequency signal generated by two single FP modes. The different lines represent instantaneous difference frequency spectra collected at different times. Inset, an instantaneous spectrum collected with the same parameters as for the main part of Fig. 3.

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