The existence of a novel kind of soliton in dissipative systems with competing, noninstantaneous nonlinearities has been predicted and experimentally verified. These subcritically bifurcating solitons exist near a supercritical continuous wave bifurcation. We show that their peculiarities originate from different saturation behavior of nonlinear loss and gain with regard to power and energy. Branches of stable and unstable solitary waves have been identified. For the first time to our best knowledge, we have experimentally proved critical slowing down of solitons.
© 2002 Optical Society of America
(060.2330) Fiber optics and optical communications : Fiber optics communications
(060.5530) Fiber optics and optical communications : Pulse propagation and temporal solitons
(190.3100) Nonlinear optics : Instabilities and chaos
(190.5970) Nonlinear optics : Semiconductor nonlinear optics including MQW
Z. Bakonyi, D. Michaelis, U. Peschel, G. Onishchukov, and F. Lederer, "Dissipative solitons and their critical slowing down near a supercritical bifurcation," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 19, 487-491 (2002)