Dye-doped cholesteric-liquid-crystal room-temperature single-photon source
Svetlana G. Lukishova, Ansgar W. Schmid, Christopher M. Supranowitz, Nadine Lippa,
Andrew J. Mcnamara, Robert W. Boyd, C. R. Stroud, Jr.
J. Mod. Opt. 51, 1535 (2004).
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Fluorescence antibunching from single terrylene molecules embedded in a cholesteric-liquid-crystal
host is used to demonstrate operation of a room-temperature single-photon source. One-dimensional
(1-D) photonic-band-gap microcavities in planar-aligned cholesteric liquid crystals with band gaps
from visible to near-infrared spectral regions are fabricated. Liquid-crystal hosts (including
liquid crystal oligomers and polymers) increase the source efficiency, firstly, by aligning the
dye molecules along the direction preferable for maximum excitation efficiency (deterministic
molecular alignment provides deterministically polarized output photons), secondly, by tuning the
1-D photonic-band-gap microcavity to the dye fluorescence band and thirdly, by protecting the dye
molecules from quenchers, such as oxygen. In our present experiments, using oxygen-depleted
liquid-crystal hosts, dye bleaching is avoided for periods exceeding one hour of continuous
532 nm excitation.
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