Efficient computation of coherent multimode instabilities in lasers using a spectral approach

Sara Kacmoli, Saeed A. Khan, Claire F. Gmachl, Hakan E. Türeci

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Coherent multimode instabilities are responsible for several phenomena of recent interest in semiconductor lasers, such as the generation of frequency combs and ultrashort pulses. These techonologies have proven disruptive in optical telecommunications and spectroscopy applications. While the standard Maxwell-Bloch equations (MBEs) encompass such complex lasing phenomena, their integration is computationally expensive and offers limited analytical insight. In this paper, we demonstrate an efficient spectral approach to the simulation of multimode instabilities via a quantitative analysis of the instability of single-frequency lasing in ring lasers, referred to as the Lorenz-Haken (LH) instability or the RNGH instability in distinct parameter regimes. Our approach, referred to as CFTD, uses generally non-Hermitian Constant Flux modes to obtain projected Time Domain equations. CFTD provides excellent agreement with finite-difference integration of the MBEs across a wide range of parameters in regimes of non-stationary inversion, including frequency comb formation and spatiotemporal chaos. We also develop a modal linear stability analysis using CFTD to efficiently predict multimode instabilities in lasers. The combination of numerical accuracy, speedup, and semi-analytic insight across a variety of dynamical regimes make the CFTD approach ideal to analyze multimode instabilities in lasers, especially in more complex geometries or coupled laser arrays.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number113030
JournalNew Journal of Physics
Issue number11
StatePublished - 2023
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


  • coherent instabilities
  • frequency combs
  • lasers
  • spectral method


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