We demonstrate all-optical modulation based on ultrafast optical carrier injection in a GaAs photonic crystal cavity using a degenerate pump-probe technique. The observations agree well with a coupled-mode model incorporating all relevant nonlinearities. The low switching energy (120fJ), small energy absorption (10fJ), fast on-off response (15ps), limited only by carrier lifetime, and a minimum 10 dB modulation depth suggest practical all-optical switching applications at high repetition rates.

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