We obtained a long-time-storage mechanism for spectral features in thulium ions doped into YAG by applying a magnetic field that splits the electronic ground state. We show experimentally that the storage time can be more than 30 s, which is 3 orders of magnitude longer than that of the metastable state that normally is used for information storage in this material. Level splitting and storage lifetimes for various magnetic field strengths of as much as 5 T were investigated. This storage mechanism will be relevant in the many coherent transient-based signal-processing schemes in which Tm:YAG is being used, and we demonstrate long-time storage in a basic data storage application.
© 2003 Optical Society of America
(020.1670) Atomic and molecular physics : Coherent optical effects
(160.5690) Materials : Rare-earth-doped materials
(210.4680) Optical data storage : Optical memories
(300.6240) Spectroscopy : Spectroscopy, coherent transient
(300.6250) Spectroscopy : Spectroscopy, condensed matter
Nicklas Ohlsson, Mattias Nilsson, Stefan Krll, and R. Krishna Mohan, "Long-time-storage mechanism for Tm:YAG in a magnetic field," Opt. Lett. 28, 450-452 (2003)