Symmetry, stability, and computation of degenerate lasing modes

David Liu, Bo Zhen, Li Ge, Felipe Hernandez, Adi Pick, Stephan Burkhardt, Matthias Liertzer, Stefan Rotter, Steven G. Johnson

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4 Scopus citations


We present a general method to obtain the stable lasing solutions for the steady-state ab initio lasing theory (SALT) for the case of a degenerate symmetric laser in two dimensions (2D). We find that under most regimes (with one pathological exception), the stable solutions are clockwise and counterclockwise circulating modes, generalizing previously known results of ring lasers to all 2D rotational symmetry groups. Our method uses a combination of semianalytical solutions close to lasing threshold and numerical solvers to track the lasing modes far above threshold. Near threshold, we find closed-form expressions for both circulating modes and other types of lasing solutions as well as for their linearized Maxwell-Bloch eigenvalues, providing a simple way to determine their stability without having to do a full nonlinear numerical calculation. Above threshold, we show that a key feature of the circulating mode is its "chiral" intensity pattern, which arises from spontaneous symmetry breaking of mirror symmetry, and whose symmetry group requires that the degeneracy persists even when nonlinear effects become important. Finally, we introduce a numerical technique to solve the degenerate SALT equations far above threshold even when spatial discretization artificially breaks the degeneracy.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number023835
JournalPhysical Review A
Issue number2
StatePublished - 23 Feb 2017
Externally publishedYes

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© 2017 American Physical Society.


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