Abstract

We describe a spontaneous symmetry-breaking phenomenon between the intensities of the ordinary and extraordinary components of the fundamental field in intracavity type II harmonic generation. It is based on a triply resonant cavity containing a type II χ2 crystal pumped at fundamental frequency ω0. The pump beam generates a second-harmonic mode at frequency 2ω0 that acts as a pump for frequency-degenerate type II parametric downconversion. Under operating conditions symmetric with respect to the ordinary and extraordinary components of the fundamental wave, we show a breaking of the symmetry of the intensities of these two waves.

© 2005 Optical Society of America

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