Achieving non-reciprocal light propagation via stimuli that break time-reversal symmetry, without magneto-optics, remains a major challenge for integrated nanophotonic devices. Recently, optomechanical microsystems in which light and vibrational modes are coupled through ponderomotive forces have demonstrated strong non-reciprocal effects through a variety of techniques, but always using optical pumping. None of these approaches has demonstrated bandwidth exceeding that of the mechanical system, and all of them require optical power; these are both fundamental and practical issues. Here, we resolve both challenges by breaking time-reversal symmetry using a two-dimensional acoustic pump that simultaneously provides a non-zero overlap integral for light-sound interaction and also satisfies the necessary phase-matching. We use this technique to produce a non-reciprocal modulator (a frequency shifting isolator) by means of indirect interband scattering. We demonstrate mode conversion asymmetry up to 15 dB and efficiency as high as 17% over a bandwidth exceeding 1 GHz.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics