Low loss optical waveguiding in large single crystals of a thiophene-based oligomer†
Active optical waveguides based on functional small organic molecules in micro/nano regime have attracted great interest for their potential applications in high speed miniaturized photonic integrations. Here, we report on the active waveguiding properties of millimeter sized single crystals of a newly synthesized thiophene-based oligomer. These large crystals exhibit low optical loss compared to other organic nanostructures, and optical losses depend on the emission energy. Moreover, we find that the coupling of photoluminescence to waveguide modes is very efficient, typically greater than 40%. These features indicate that such perfect single crystals with a low density of defects and extremely smooth surfaces exhibit low propagation loss, which makes them good candidates for the design and the fabrication of novel organic optical fibers and lasers.