17 February 2010 Optically switched erbium fiber laser using a tunable fiber-Bragg grating
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Abstract
The ability to tune the Bragg wavelength of a fibre-Bragg grating (FBG) in an all-fibre laser can offer added functionality such as laser wavelength tunability, polarization selectivity,1 and Q-switching.2 Compared to current techniques which rely on mechanically straining the FBG to achieve Bragg-wavelength tunability, an all-optical technique for tuning an FBG offers potentially faster switching speeds and a more robust and simple cavity. All-optical tuning of the Bragg wavelength of an FBG has been demonstrated previously by resonant optical pumping; however this technique has only been applied to passive systems for switching applications.3 In this work, we have further investigated this optical-tuning process, experimentally identifying three time-scale regimes, and optimised it for application to active systems. Furthermore, we constructed an erbium all-fibre laser cavity consisting of an outputcoupler FBG and an optically-tunable, high-reflector FBG. The cavity pumping and the optical tuning of the FBG were kept independent. By repetitively tuning the high-reflector FBG on- and off-resonance with the output-coupler FBG, we actively Q-switched the erbium fibre laser at repetition rates up to 35 kHz, limited only by our diode driver. We show that grating tuning at >300 kHz is possible with the existing embodiment, and discuss further potential to operate at MHz rates.
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Robert J. Williams, Robert J. Williams, Nemanja Jovanovic, Nemanja Jovanovic, Graham D. Marshall, Graham D. Marshall, Michael J. Withford, Michael J. Withford, } "Optically switched erbium fiber laser using a tunable fiber-Bragg grating", Proc. SPIE 7580, Fiber Lasers VII: Technology, Systems, and Applications, 75800P (17 February 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.839450; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.839450
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