All-optical controlled variable optical attenuator using photochromic sol gel material

Xianjun Ke, Michael R. Wang, Daqun Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


In this letter, we report an all-optical controlled polarization-dependent variable optical attenuator using a photochromic sol gel material developed by us. Optical attenuation is achieved by means of photochromic phase modulation in a Mach-Zehnder interferometric waveguide device fabricated with the sol gel film. A 5-mW/mm2 light illumination at 532 nm on a 3-mm-long sol gel arm was found to produce a complete 2π phase shift between the two arms of the device, resulting in a 15-dB attenuation dynamic range for transverse-electric-polarization light. The response time of the device is around 50 ms. The wavelength-dependent performance of the device has been characterized across the entire C-band.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1025-1027
Number of pages3
JournalIEEE Photonics Technology Letters
Issue number9
StatePublished - May 1 2006


  • All-optical control
  • Photochromic
  • Sol gel
  • Variable optical attenuator (VOA)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials


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