PHYC/ECE 568 Nonlinear Optics

News & Updates:

Due to COVID-19 outbreak, in-class lectures are suspended until further notice.  Enrolled students should join on-line lectures by the instructor using Zoom.  The link and password has been emailed to you all.  

Online Zoom lectures will be held during the class hours (MW, 4-5:15 pm).  

Help with Zoom (UNM) log-in? 

Link: ZOOM Lectures  

In short: After clicking on the above link, sign-in using SSO;  enter "unm" in the dialogue box, and then sign-in as your UNM account. (More Here

About Your Homework: Please (preferably) scan and email them to TA ( Mingyang Zhang ) or drop it at PAIS (Mingyang’s mailbox). 

Please stay safe and practice social distancing.  

Office: Physics & Astronomy (PAIS), Rm. 2220 
Phone: 226-3693
Office Hours: By appointment or just stop by

Teaching Assistant (TA): Mingyang Zhang 

Class meeting times: MW 4:00-5:15 PM; PAIS 1140
Textbook: Nonlinear Optics, (3rd edition) by Robert W. Boyd 

Other References:


Advanced Optics, Laser Physics I, (Check UNM Catalog for more details). Basic knowledge of Quantum Mechanics is also required.

Some Useful References:


Homework problem sets will be assigned on a regular basis throughout the semester.

There will be one midterm exam and a final presentation.

HW#Due DateDescriptionSolution Remarks
1Mon. Feb. 10
2Wed. Feb. 19
3Wed. March 4
4Mon. March 23
5Wed. April 1
6Mon. April 13
7Mon. April 20
8Mon. April 27

Mid-Term Exam- Cancelled


9Wed. May 6


Select a topic for your final presentation by May 1, 2020.   List of Potential Topics 

The final pretensions will tentatively be held on the following two days (via Zoom):  ()

All are required to attend and participate in both sessions.   Students will be selected randomly to make their presentations.   

Please make your presentations clear, educational and entertaining, not exceeding 20 min.

Final Presentations:  

Monday (5/11- 3-5:30pm) - Zoom Link  

Tuesday (5/12, 3-5:30pm) - Zoom Link

  • An oral presentation ( maximum of 18-20 minutes) is expected on each subject.
  • Students should also share (upload) their presentations to a OneDrive shared folder. 
  • Students will be asked randomly during each session to present.  
  • There will be an additional 3-5 minutes for question and answer at the end of each presentation.
  • All students enrolled are required to attend every presentation by their fellow classmates and preferably participate in the discussions.
  • The presentations should be clear and understandable by all the students. Use equations sparingly (only if needed) and avoid crowded viewgraphs. Remember that you are responsible for making the class understand the topic. Do not try to cover to much material.


NameProject Title
Bassett, Cody NLO in Fibers 
Bingham, Samuel Thermal Modal Instabilities in High Power Fiber Lasers
Cooper, MatthewSBS in Fiber Lasers 
Dibaji, Hassan Raman Lasers in Diamond
Kock, Jackson Z-scan applications (absorption saturation, ..) 
Rubin, Trevor Laser Filamentation and Applications
Rukh, Lala Kerr- Combs in micro-resonators
Zhang, Mingyang THz Generation

David Mermin (What is wrong with those talks?) 

Useful Tips and Articles for Student Presentations:


Tentative Grading (subject to change): The final grade is weighted as follows:
Midterm Exam: 0%
Final Project: 70%   
Homework: 30%
Course Syllabus

  • Introduction (historical overview, applications of NLO)
  • Nonlinear Susceptibilities (χ(2) and χ(3) processes, nonlinear refraction and absorption)
  • Classical Anharmonic Oscillator Model
  • Properties of Nonlinear Susceptibilities (symmetries, Kramers-Kronig dispersion relations)
  • Wave Propagation in NLO Media (coupled amplitude equations for χ(2) processes, phase matching, second harmonic generation, sum and difference frequency generation, optical parametric processes, cascading nonlinearities)
  • Quantum Mechanical Treatment of Nonlinear Susceptibilities
  • χ(3) Processes (electronic, vibrational and rotational effects, optical Kerr effect, self-focusing, wave-mixing, bistability, phase-conjugation, beam coupling, solitons)
  • Photo-Refractive Nonlinearities
  • Stimulated Light Scattering (stimulated Raman, Brillouin, and Rayleigh scattering)

Class information