Tunable Room Temperature THz Sources Based on Nonlinear Mixing in a Hybrid Optical and THz Micro-Ring Resonator

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© 2015, Nature Publishing Group. All rights reserved. We propose and systematically investigate a novel tunable, compact room temperature terahertz (THz) source based on difference frequency generation in a hybrid optical and THz micro-ring resonator. We describe detailed design steps of the source capable of generating THz wave in 0.5-10 THz with a tunability resolution of 0.05 THz by using high second order optical susceptibility (χ(2)) in crystals and polymers. In order to enhance THz generation compared to bulk nonlinear material, we employ a nonlinear optical micro-ring resonator with high-Q resonant modes for infrared input waves. Another ring oscillator with the same outer radius underneath the nonlinear ring with an insulation of SiO2 layer supports the generated THz with resonant modes and out-couples them into a THz waveguide. The phase matching condition is satisfied by engineering both the optical and THz resonators with appropriate effective indices. We analytically estimate THz output power of the device by using practical values of susceptibility in available crystals and polymers. The proposed source can enable tunable, compact THz emitters, on-chip integrated spectrometers, inspire a broader use of THz sources and motivate many important potential THz applications in different fields.

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Scientific Reports