Spectrotemporal shaping of itinerant photons via distributed nanomechanics

Linran Fan, Chang Ling Zou, Na Zhu, Hong X. Tang

Research output: Contribution to journalLetterpeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Efficient phase manipulation of light is the cornerstone of many advanced photonic applications 1–4 . However, the pursuit of compact, broadband and deep phase control of light has been hindered by the finite nonlinearity of the optical materials available for integrated photonics 5,6 . Here, we propose a dynamically driven photonic structure for deep phase manipulation and coherent spectrotemporal control of light based on distributed nanomechanics. We experimentally demonstrate the quasi-phase-matched interaction between stationary mechanical vibration and itinerant optical fields, which is used to generate an on-chip modulated frequency comb over 1.15 THz (160 lines), corresponding to a phase modulation depth of over 21.6π. In addition, an optical time-lens effect induced by mechanical vibration is realized, leading to optical pulse compression of over 70-fold to obtain a minimum pulse duration of 1.02 ps. The high efficiency and versatility make such mechanically driven dynamic photonic structures ideal for realizing complex optical control schemes, such as lossless non-reciprocity 7 , frequency division optical communication 1 and optical frequency comb division 8 .

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)323-327
Number of pages5
JournalNature Photonics
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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