We have repeatedly and reproducibly switched a GaAs-AlAs planar microcavity operating in the “original” telecom band by exploiting the virtually instantaneous electronic Kerr effect. We achieve repetition times as fast as 300 fs, thereby breaking the terahertz modulation barrier. The rate of the switching in our experiments is only determined by optics and not by material-related relaxation. Our results offer opportunities for fundamental studies of cavity quantum electrodynamics and optical information processing in the subpicosecond time scale.
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