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Opt Express ; 27(3): 2248-2257, 2019 Feb 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30732264


Intersubband (ISB) transitions in semiconductor multi-quantum well (MQW) structures are promising candidates for the development of saturable absorbers at terahertz (THz) frequencies. Here, we exploit amplitude and phase-resolved two-dimensional (2D) THz spectroscopy on the sub-cycle time scale to observe directly the saturation dynamics and coherent control of ISB transitions in a metal-insulator MQW structure. Clear signatures of incoherent pump-probe and coherent four-wave mixing signals are recorded as a function of the peak electric field of the single-cycle THz pulses. All nonlinear signals reach a pronounced maximum for a THz electric field amplitude of 11 kV/cm and decrease for higher fields. We demonstrate that this behavior is a fingerprint of THz-driven carrier-wave Rabi flopping. A numerical solution of the Maxwell-Bloch equations reproduces our experimental findings quantitatively and traces the trajectory of the Bloch vector. This microscopic model allows us to design tailored MQW structures with optimized dynamical properties for saturable absorbers that could be used in future compact semiconductor-based single-cycle THz sources.

Sci Rep ; 7: 44240, 2017 03 13.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28287123


Near-field imaging with terahertz (THz) waves is emerging as a powerful technique for fundamental research in photonics and across physical and life sciences. Spatial resolution beyond the diffraction limit can be achieved by collecting THz waves from an object through a small aperture placed in the near-field. However, light transmission through a sub-wavelength size aperture is fundamentally limited by the wave nature of light. Here, we conceive a novel architecture that exploits inherently strong evanescent THz field arising within the aperture to mitigate the problem of vanishing transmission. The sub-wavelength aperture is originally coupled to asymmetric electrodes, which activate the thermo-electric THz detection mechanism in a transistor channel made of flakes of black-phosphorus or InAs nanowires. The proposed novel THz near-field probes enable room-temperature sub-wavelength resolution coherent imaging with a 3.4 THz quantum cascade laser, paving the way to compact and versatile THz imaging systems and promising to bridge the gap in spatial resolution from the nanoscale to the diffraction limit.