Peculiar light-matter interactions can break the rule that a single beam polarization can address only two states in an optical memory device. Multistate storage of a single beam polarization is achieved using self-induced surface diffraction gratings in a photoactive polymer material. The grating orientation follows the incident light beam's polarization direction. The permanent self-induced surface relief grating can be read out in real time using the same laser beam.
© 2005 Optical Society of America
S. Ahmadi Kandjani, R. Barille, S. Dabos-Seignon, J.-M. Nunzi, E. Ortyl, and S. Kucharski, "Multistate polarization addressing using a single beam in an azo polymer film," Opt. Lett. 30, 1986-1988 (2005)