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15 March 2006 Evaluation of a high power Q-switched Tm3+-doped silica fiber laser operating near 2μm
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The operation and performance characteristics of three different modulation techniques for the Q-switching of Tm3+ doped silica fibre lasers operating near 2 um are described. Various Q-switched regimes are observed for a range of modulation frequencies and fibre lengths when the fibre is end-pumped with a high power Nd: YAG laser operating at 1.319 um in a linear bidirectional cavity. A larger multimode fibre core of 17 um diameter is used to increase the laser gain volume and achieve higher pulse energy. Experimentally this laser produced pulses with a peak power of 18.5 W, at higher repetition rate of approximately 20 kHz, a single Q-switched pulse of duration 300 ns at full width at half-maximum (FWHM), and 5.5 uJ are observed using an optical (mechanical) chopper. A peak power of ~ 3.3 kW and pulse duration of 320 ns (FWHM) at low repetition rate of 50-70 Hz and highest pulse energy up to 2.3 mJ by using an electro-optic modulator (EOM) is obtained. This peak power is enhanced to be 4.1 kW and the shortest pulse duration at FWHM of 150 ns at low repetition rates of 100-500 Hz when using an acousto-optic modulator (AOM). The results presented show that Q-switching is currently limited by the performance of the intracavity modulator. In this paper, an evaluation is presented of the high performance of active Q-switched Tm3+ doped fibre lasers using various techniques, some reasons for the difference in performance are discussed and some potential routes to further improvements are described.
© (2006) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Ashraf F. El-Sherif and Terence A. King "Evaluation of a high power Q-switched Tm3+-doped silica fiber laser operating near 2μm", Proc. SPIE 6102, Fiber Lasers III: Technology, Systems, and Applications, 61020R (15 March 2006);


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