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Robust soliton crystals in a thermally controlled microresonator

Abstract

We demonstrate robust soliton crystals generation with a fixed frequency pump laser through a thermoelectric-cooler-based thermal-tuning approach in a butterfly-packaged complementary-metal-oxide-semiconductor-compatible microresonator. Varieties of soliton crystal states, exhibiting “palm-like” optical spectra that result from the strong interactions between the dense soliton ensembles and reflect their temporal distribution directly, are experimentally observed by sweeping one cavity resonance across the pump frequency from the blue-detuned side by reducing the operating temperature of the resonator. Benefitting from the tiny intra-cavity energy change, repeatable interconversion between the chaotic modulation instability and stable soliton crystal states can be successfully achieved via simple tuning of the temperature or pump power, showing the easy accessibility and excellent stability of such soliton crystals. This work could facilitate microresonator-based optical frequency combs towards a portable, adjustable, and low-cost system while avoiding the requirements of delicate frequency-sweeping pump techniques.

© 2018 Optical Society of America

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