We study the time-resolved reflectivity spectrum of a switched planar GaAs-AlAs microcavity. Between 5 and 40 ps after the switching (pump) pulse, we observe a strong excess probe reflectivity and a change of the frequency of light trapped in the cavity up to 5 linewidths away from the cavity resonance. This frequency change does not adiabatically follow the fast-changing cavity resonance. The frequency change is attributed to an accumulated phase change due to the time-dependent refractive index. An analytical model predicts dynamics in qualitative agreement with the experiments, and points to crucial parameters that control future applications.
© 2012 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: September 30, 2011
Revised Manuscript: December 14, 2011
Manuscript Accepted: December 15, 2011
Published: February 1, 2012
Philip J. Harding, Huib J. Bakker, Alex Hartsuiker, Julien Claudon, Allard P. Mosk, Jean-Michel Gérard, and Willem L. Vos, "Observation of a stronger-than-adiabatic change of light trapped in an ultrafast switched GaAs-AlAs microcavity," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 29, A1-A5 (2012)