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Nonlinear Optics of fibre event horizons

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Article number4969
Number of pages3
JournalNature Communications
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


The nonlinear interaction of light in an optical fibre can mimic the physics at an event horizon. This analogue arises when a weak probe wave is unable to pass through an intense soliton, despite propagating at a different velocity. To date, these dynamics have been described in the time domain in terms of a soliton-induced refractive index barrier that modifies the velocity of the probe. Here we complete the physical description of fibre-optic event horizons by presenting a full frequency-domain description in terms of cascaded four-wave mixing between discrete single-frequency fields, and experimentally demonstrate signature frequency shifts using continuous wave lasers. Our description is confirmed by the remarkable agreement with experiments performed in the continuum limit, reached using ultrafast lasers. We anticipate that clarifying the description of fibre event horizons will significantly impact on the description of horizon dynamics and soliton interactions in photonics and other systems.

Publication forum classification

Field of science, Statistics Finland