Abstract

We investigate, numerically and experimentally, the effect of thermo-optical (TO) chaos on soliton generation dynamics in microresonators. Numerical simulations that include the thermal dynamics show that the generated solitons can either survive or annihilate when the pump laser is scanned from blue to red and then stop at a fixed wavelength; the outcome is stochastic and is strongly related to the number of solitons generated. The random fluctuations of the cavity resonance occurring under TO chaos are also found to trigger delayed spontaneous soliton generation after the laser scan ends, which could enable soliton excitation with slow laser tuning speed. Stochastic soliton annihilation/survival, as well as delayed spontaneous soliton generation, is observed experimentally in a silicon-nitride microresonator.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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