All-optical switches find applications in ultrahigh-speed network–user interfaces and in specialized high-speed processors, such as data regenerators and encryptors and microwave signal generators. We describe a semiconductor optical-amplifier-based single-arm interferometric switch called the ultrafast nonlinear interferometer. We discuss how the gain and the refractive-index nonlinearities in semiconductor optical amplifiers have an impact on the all-optical switch design, and we review experimental results obtained with the ultrafast nonlinear interferometer.
© 1998 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: August 11, 1997
Revised Manuscript: September 25, 1997
Published: May 10, 1998
Naimish S. Patel, Katherine L. Hall, and Kristin A. Rauschenbach, "Interferometric all-optical switches for ultrafast signal processing," Appl. Opt. 37, 2831-2842 (1998)