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Observation of accelerating Wannier–Stark beams in optically induced photonic lattices

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Abstract

We generate optical beams analogous to the Wannier–Stark states in semiconductor superlattices and observe that the two main lobes of the WS beams self-bend (accelerate) along two opposite trajectories in a uniform one-dimensional photonic lattice. Such self-accelerating features exist only in the presence of the lattice and are not observed in a homogenous medium. Under the action of nonlinearity, however, the beam structure and acceleration cannot be preserved. Our experimental observations are in qualitative agreement with theoretical predictions.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

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