8 March 2017 A single-frequency Ho:YLF pulsed laser with frequency stability better than 500 kHz
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Abstract
The spectral stability of a previously reported Ho:YLF single frequency pulsed laser oscillator emitting at 2051 nm is drastically improved by utilizing a narrow linewidth Optically Pumped Semiconductor Laser (OPSL) as a seed for the oscillator. The oscillator is pumped by a dedicated gain-switched Tm:YLF laser at 1890 nm. The ramp-and-fire method is employed for generating single frequency emission. The heterodyne technique is used to analyze the spectral properties. The laser is designed to meet a part of the specifications for future airborne or space borne LIDAR detection of CO2. Seeding with a DFB diode and with an OPSL are compared. With OPSL seeding an Allan deviation of the centroid of the spectral distribution of 38 kHz and 517 kHz over 10 seconds and 60 milliseconds of sampling time for single pulses is achieved. The spectral width is approximately 30 MHz. The oscillator emits 2 mJ pulse energy with 50 Hz pulse repetition frequency (PRF) and 20 ns pulse duration. The optical to optical efficiency of the Ho:YLF oscillator is 10 % and the beam quality is diffraction limited. To our knowledge this is the best spectral stability demonstrated to date for a Ho:YLF laser with millijoule pulse energy and nanosecond pulse duration.
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P. Kucirek, A. Meissner, S. Nyga, J. Mertin, M. Höfer, H.-D. Hoffmann, "A single-frequency Ho:YLF pulsed laser with frequency stability better than 500 kHz", Proc. SPIE 10082, Solid State Lasers XXVI: Technology and Devices, 100821K (8 March 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2253722; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2253722
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