We report our observation of a bleaching effect under an ultraviolet exposure in LiNbO<sub>3</sub>:Fe:Cu crystals. Two three-step recording-transferring-fixing schemes are proposed to record nonvolatile photorefractive holograms in such crystals. In the schemes two red laser beams and an ultraviolet illumination are used selectively to write the charge grating in the shallow-level Fe centers, to develop the charge grating in the deep-level Cu centers by transferring the charge grating in the Fe centers, and to fix only the charge grating in the Cu centers for unerasable read-out. Experimental results, verifications, and an optimal recording scheme are given. A comparison of the lithium niobate crystals of the same double-doping system of Fe:Mn, Ce:Mn, Ce:Cu, and Fe:Cu is outlined.
© 2002 Optical Society of America
De’an Liu, Liren Liu, Changhe Zhou, Liyong Ren, and Guangao Li, "Nonvolatile Holograms in LiNbO3:Fe:Cu by Use of the Bleaching Effect," Appl. Opt. 41, 6809-6814 (2002)