Nanosecond optical excitation dynamics of long M-state lifetime bacteriorhodopsin films

M. Bacon, C. H. Wang, A. K. Kar, R. L. Baxter, B. S. Wherrett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Dynamic parameters relevant to the performance of bacteriorhodopsin (bR) as an optical cache memory are reported. The thermal relaxation of the M-state photocycle-intermediate has been a barrier to the exploitation of wild-type bR in optical memory devices. Extension of the room-temperature M-state lifetime from 10 ms to ~ 10 s is described. Writing to the long-lifetime material is achieved for nanosecond pulses of less than 1 nJ µm-2 fluence. Reading, at a contrast-ratio of 1.3:1, is achievable following a 5 ms delay. Erasure is achieved on a 50 µs timescale for pulse fluences similar to those used for the writing stage. Following continuous-wave (cw) excitation, contrast ratios of 200:1 are obtained, with significant photochromic changes remaining after many seconds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-183
Number of pages9
JournalOptics Communications
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 15 Feb 1996


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