Optical square wave sources are particularly important for applications in high speed signal processing and optical communications. In most realizations, optical square waves are generated by electro-optic modulation, dispersion engineering of mode-locked lasers, polarization switching, or by exploiting optical bi-stability and/or optical delayed feedback in semiconductor diode lasers, as well as vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs). All such configurations are bulky and cause significant timing jitters. Here we demonstrate the direct generation of optical square waves from a polarization-maintaining figure-eight nonlinear amplifying loop mirror (NALM) configuration that uses an embedded high index glass micro-cavity as the nonlinear element. Such a NALM mimics the behavior of a saturable absorber and has been used to reach passive mode-locking of pico- and even nano-second pulses. In our method, the NALM, including a high-Q micro-ring resonator, acts as an ultra-narrowband spectral filter and at the same time provides a large nonlinear phase-shift. Previously we have demonstrated that such a configuration enables sufficient nonlinear phase-shifts for low-power narrow-bandwidth (~100 MHz FWHM) passive mode-locked laser operation. Here we demonstrate the switching of stable optical square wave pulses from conventional mode-locked pulses by adjusting the cavity properties. In addition, the square wave signal characteristics, such as repetition rate and pulse duration, can be also modified in a similar fashion. The source typically produces nanosecond optical square wave pulses with a repetition rate of ~ 120 MHz at 1550nm. In order to verify the reach of our approach, we compare our experimental results with numerical simulations using a delay differential equation model tailored for a figure-eight laser.
We control the optical comb in Nd:YVO4 mode-locked lasers with intracavity frequency doubling based on KTP crystals via changing the cavity length and its dispersion properties and achieve high-purity radiofrequency (RF) signals. The laser output wavelength (532 nm) is in the range of the molecular iodine absorption spectrum with narrow (1.5 kHz) homogeneously broadened lines. We propose to stabilize the two longitudinal modes on two narrow iodine absorption lines. The third derivative of the absorption line could be obtained by heterodyning the absorption signal with the third harmonic of the modulation signal. The resulting RF error signal could be used to stabilize two locked longitudinal modes separated by 1.37 GHz which results in stabilized beat note signal.
We demonstrate a pulse-bursting phenomenon in Yb:Er glass laser operating at 1.54 μm. Glass-ceramic material with a low value of saturation threshold based on Co2+:β-ZnSiO4 nanocrystals was used as a passive gate for pulse-burst operation. The bursts of pulses were 1.5 ms long, each burst consisted of 40-55 pulses with 9-30 μJ energy per pulse and 0.2-3 μs pulse width. Bursting outputs arise via a coupling between slow switching arising via a slow pump modulation and fast pulsations resulting from Q-switch mechanism. We show that absorption cross-section strongly affects the mode of laser operation ranging from relaxation oscillations corresponding to low cross-section values to bursting and conventional Q-switch operation in the case of their higher values.
We present a new TOF camera design based on a compact actively Q-switched diode pumped solid-state laser operating in 1.5 μm range and a receiver system based on a short wave infrared InGaAs PIN diodes focal plane array with an image intensifier and a special readout integration circuit. The compact camera is capable of depth imaging up to 4 kilometers with 10 frame/s and 1.2 m error. The camera could be applied for airborne and space geodesy location and navigation.
We report on theoretical investigation of quasi-three level Er:YAG laser. We propose a numerical model of the laser design with side pump by 1471 nm laser diodes. The model describes the dynamical propagation of the pump in the cavity and the kinetic parameters of the active medium.
We propose a Rayleigh-Sommerfeld based method for numerical calculation of multiple tilted apertures near and far field diffraction patterns. Method is based on iterative procedure of fast Fourier transform based circular convolution of the initial field complex amplitudes distribution and impulse response function modified in order to account aperture and observation planes mutual tilt. The method is computationally efficient and has good accordance with the results of experimental diffraction patterns and can be applied for analysis of spatial noises occurring in master oscillator power amplifier laser systems. The example of diffraction simulation for a Phobos-Ground laser rangefinder amplifier is demonstrated.
We experimentally study passive mode-locking in Nd:YVO4 laser based on second harmonic generation in KTP crystal.
We characterized RF spectra and optical spectra versus pump power, the KTP crystal temperature and position, the
output coupler reflectivity, and the intracavity polarizer. We discuss the device performance considering cascaded χ(2)
lensing in KTP, frequency doubling nonlinearity, and Kerr lens formed in Nd:YVO4. Implementing an intracavity Lyot
filter and cavity length modulation via PZT does not affect mode-locking capability. These results and ultra-low noise
mode beat signal open a new perspective for stable RF signal generation by transferring optical reference stability
(iodine absorption lines) into RF domain.
We demonstrate a new approach to designing a compact RF standard based on the transfer of frequency stability of
hyperfine transitions in molecular iodine to the stability of a laser cavity length. We use frequency doubled Nd:YVO4
laser operating in Kerr lens mode-locked regime and frequency lock it to hyperfine transitions in molecular iodine with
further detecting the beat note signal between longitudinal modes on a fast photodiode. A similar system is used for
estimating the standard Allan deviation of RF signal which is 2.1 x 10-14 at the time 100 s.