Observation of Asymmetric Transport in Structures with Active Nonlinearities

N. Bender, S. Factor, J. D. Bodyfelt, H. Ramezani, F. M. Ellis, T. Kottos

A mechanism for asymmetric transport based on the interplay between the fundamental symmetries of parity (P) and time (T) with nonlinearity is presented. We experimentally demonstrate and theoretically analyze the phenomenon using a pair of coupled van der Pol oscillators, as a reference system, one with anharmonic gain and the other with complementary anharmonic loss; connected to two transmission lines. An increase of the gain/loss strength or the number of PT-symmetric nonlinear dimers in a chain, can increase both the asymmetry and transmittance intensities.

Optics (physics.optics); Mesoscale and Nanoscale Physics (cond-mat.mes-hall)

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