A soliton explosion refers to a phenomena in passive mode locked lasers where spectral structure of the laser pulse disappear suddenly but returns back its original shape after a few roundtrips. This phenomena timescale is from nanoseconds to microseconds, and therefore this particular event of single-shot pulse spectrum cannot be detected by using a conventional spectrometer which consists on a grating and a linear array detector. Progress on photonic time-stretch is enabling the single-shot spectral measurement in real-time. Previous observations of soliton explosion in fiber lasers was limited to dissipative soliton in an operation state between mode locking and noise-like pulses. Here we report the first observation of soliton explosion in an unstable mode locking region in the stretched pulse configuration via nonlinear polarization evolution with time stretch spectroscopy. Developing with an Yb doped fiber laser and capturing 8000 consecutive single-shot spectra, we observed that the features of soliton explosion dynamics between narrow and broadband mode locking regimes. We anticipate that the explosion dynamics are related to a pulse energy decreasing process during the stabilizing toward the steady state mode locking operation. We believe that these results provide us novel insights into understanding the broadband spectral formation and evolution in unstable mode locking regime of lasers.
Masayuki Suzuki, Ozdal Boyraz, Mohammad H. Asghari, Paul Trinh, Hiroto Kuroda, and Bahram Jalali, "Observing soliton explosion in unstable mode locked Yb fiber laser with time stretch spectroscopy (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10517, Real-time Measurements, Rogue Phenomena, and Single-Shot Applications III, 1051706 (Presented at SPIE LASE: January 29, 2018; Published: 14 March 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2287607.5751428889001.
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