Abstract

Mutually pumped phase conjugation, a process by which two incident laser beams can mutually pump each other to generate the phase-conjugate replica of the other beam, is studied in a transparent Kerr medium with an electrostrictive nonlinearity. The nonlinear medium acts as a phase-conjugating mirror to both of the incident beams and generates their Stokes-shifted phase-conjugated outputs by the nearly degenerate four-wave mixing process. Our results show that this process will occur only if the coupling strength, defined by the product of the Kerr amplitude gain coefficient, the total input intensity, and the interaction length, is above the threshold value of 2. If the intensity of one of the input beams exceeds the threshold value and the second input beam is weaker than the first, then the weak beam is phase conjugated with a large reflectivity that has a maximum value of the intensity ratio of the strong to the weak input beam. For negligible absorption in the medium, a complete transfer of energy of both the incident beams into the phase-conjugate beams can occur for finite interaction lengths that are only slightly larger than the threshold value. Seeding the oscillation beams tends to lower the phase-conjugate power reflectivities, probably because of increased contribution from the competing two-wave mixing process.

© 1990 Optical Society of America

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