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      Optical gating with organic building blocks. A quantitative model for the fluorescence modulation of photochromic perylene bisimide dithienylcyclopentene triads

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          Abstract

          We investigated the capability of molecular triads, consisting of two strong fluorophores that were covalently linked to a photochromic molecule, for optical gating. Therefore we monitored the fluorescence intensity of the fluorophores as a function of the isomeric state of the photoswitch. From the analysis of our data we develop a kinetic model that allows us to predict quantitatively the degree of the fluorescence modulation as a function of the mutual intensities of the lasers that are used to induce the fluorescence and the switching of the photochromic unit. We find that the achievable contrast for the modulation of the fluorescence depends mainly on the intensity ratio of the two light beams and appears to be very robust against absolute changes of these intensities. The latter result provides valuable information for the development of all-optical circuits which would require to handle different signal strengths for the input and output levels.

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          Most cited references 13

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          Spiropyrans and Spirooxazines for Memories and Switches.

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            Organic chemistry: a digital fluorescent molecular photoswitch.

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              A single-molecule optical transistor.

              The transistor is one of the most influential inventions of modern times and is ubiquitous in present-day technologies. In the continuing development of increasingly powerful computers as well as alternative technologies based on the prospects of quantum information processing, switching and amplification functionalities are being sought in ultrasmall objects, such as nanotubes, molecules or atoms. Among the possible choices of signal carriers, photons are particularly attractive because of their robustness against decoherence, but their control at the nanometre scale poses a significant challenge as conventional nonlinear materials become ineffective. To remedy this shortcoming, resonances in optical emitters can be exploited, and atomic ensembles have been successfully used to mediate weak light beams. However, single-emitter manipulation of photonic signals has remained elusive and has only been studied in high-finesse microcavities or waveguides. Here we demonstrate that a single dye molecule can operate as an optical transistor and coherently attenuate or amplify a tightly focused laser beam, depending on the power of a second 'gating' beam that controls the degree of population inversion. Such a quantum optical transistor has also the potential for manipulating non-classical light fields down to the single-photon level. We discuss some of the hurdles along the road towards practical implementations, and their possible solutions.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Sci Rep
                Sci Rep
                Scientific Reports
                Nature Publishing Group
                2045-2322
                11 March 2014
                2014
                : 4
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Experimental Physics IV, University of Bayreuth 95440 Bayreuth , Germany
                [2 ]Applied Functional Polymers, University of Bayreuth 95440 Bayreuth , Germany
                [3 ]Current address: Thüringisches Institut für Textil- und Kunststoff-Forschung e.V. Breitscheidstrasse 97 07407 Rudolstadt-Schwarza, Germany.
                Author notes
                Article
                srep04316
                10.1038/srep04316
                3949285
                Copyright © 2014, Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved

                This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareALike 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/

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