Journal of the Optical Society of America B: Optical Physics

Improved characterization of chromophores for photorefractive applications

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Recently it was shown that birefringence caused by orientation of chromophores with anisotropic polarizabilities contributes more to the photorefractive effect in in situ poled organic materials than do the electro-optic properties of thef chromophores. A figure of merit specific to photorefractive applications has been derived, and an experimental procedure for its determination is described in detail. The figure of merit is evaluated for the chromophores used in four of the most historically important photorefractive polymers. The chromophore figures of merit and photorefractive material performances are compared and contrasted. © 1998 Optical Society of America.