Abstract

We use numerical optimization to find a one-dimensional potential energy function that yields the largest hyperpolarizability, which we find is within 30% of the fundamental limit. Our results reveal insights into the character of the potential energy functions and wave functions that lead to the largest hyperpolarizability. We suggest that donor–acceptor molecules with a conjugated bridge with many sites of reduced conjugation to impart conjugation modulation may be the best paradigm for making materials with huge hyperpolarizabilities that approach the fundamental limit.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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