Nonlinearity-induced photonic topological insulator
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A hallmark feature of topological insulators is robust edge transport that is impervious to scattering at defects and lattice disorder. We demonstrate a topological system, using a photonic platform, in which the existence of the topological phase is brought about by optical nonlinearity. The lattice structure remains topologically trivial in the linear regime, but as the optical power is increased above a certain power threshold, the system is driven into the topologically nontrivial regime. This transition is marked by the transient emergence of a protected unidirectional transport channel along the edge of the structure. Our work studies topological properties of matter in the nonlinear regime, providing a possible route for the development of compact devices that harness topological features in an on-demand fashion.
CitationMaczewsky, L. [et al.]. Nonlinearity-induced photonic topological insulator. "Science (New York, N.Y.)", 6 Novembre 2020, vol. 370, núm. 6517, p. 701-704.