Semiconductor disk lasers (SDLs) are attractive for applications requiring good beam quality, wavelength versatility, and high output powers. Typical SDLs utilize the active mirror geometry, where a semiconductor DBR is integrated with the active region by growth or post-growth bonding. This imposes restrictions for the SDL design, like material system choice, thermal management, and effective gain bandwidth. In DBR-free geometry, these restrictions can be alleviated. An integrated gain model predicts DBR-free geometry with twice the gain bandwidth of typical SDLs, which has been experimentally verified with active regions near 1 μm and 1.15 μm. The lift-off and bonding technique enables the integration of semiconductor active regions with arbitrary high quality substrates, allowing novel monolithic geometries. Bonding an active region onto a straight side of a commercial fused silica right angle prism, and attaching a high reflectivity mirror onto the hypotenuse side, with quasi CW pumping at 780 nm, lasing operation was achieved at 1037 nm with 0.2 mW average power at 1.6 mW average pump power. Laser dynamics show that thermal lens generation in the active region bottlenecks the laser efficiency. Investigations on total internal reflection based monolithic ring cavities are ongoing. These geometries would allow the intracavity integration of 2D materials or other passive absorbers, which could be relevant for stable mode locking. Unlike typical monolithic microchip SDLs, with the evanescent wave coupling technique, these monolithic geometries allow variable coupling efficiency.
Zhou Yang, Alexander R. Albrecht, Jeffrey G. Cederberg, and Mansoor Sheik-Bahae, "Development of optically pumped DBR-free semiconductor disk lasers (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10087, Vertical External Cavity Surface Emitting Lasers (VECSELs) VII, 100870K (Presented at SPIE LASE: January 31, 2017; Published: 21 April 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2251652.5387835709001.
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