Dr. Rüdiger Paschotta
Founder and president at RP Photonics Consulting GmbH
SPIE Involvement:
Fellow status | Author | Instructor
Area of Expertise:
laser technology , fiber lasers and amplifiers , nonlinear optics , noise in optics , fiber optics , nonlinear frequency conversion
Profile Summary

Dr. Rüdiger Paschotta has an international reputation as a distinguished expert in technical areas such as lasers and amplifiers, nonlinear optics, fiber technology, ultrashort pulses, and noise in optics. He is author or coauthor of over 100 articles in scientific journals, of over 120 presentations at international conferences, and of several book chapters. Also, he is the author of the well-known Encyclopedia of Laser Physics and Technology and three SPIE Field Guides.

Dr. Paschotta originally started his career in scientific research. In 2002, he achieved the habilitation at ETH Zürich and received the Fresnel Prize of the European Physical Society in 2002. Despite his success as a researcher (see his CV with publication list), in 2004 he started the company RP Photonics Consulting GmbH in Zürich, Switzerland, and moved to Bad Dürrheim, Germany, in 2010. His full-time occupation is now to serve companies in the photonics industry worldwide. Typical tasks are to work out feasibility studies and designs for lasers and other photonic devices, to identify and solve technical problems, to find suitable laser sources for specific applications, and to do tailored staff training courses on specialized subjects. Dr. Paschotta enjoys to be involved in manifold industrial projects with a great variety of both technical aspects and types of services, and regularly achieves very high levels of customer satisfaction.

Dr. Paschotta has also developed powerful simulation software. Particularly popular is the product RP Fiber Power for fiber lasers and amplifiers, which can also simulate ultrashort pulse propagation in fiber and bulk devices.
Publications (7)


SPIE Press Book | October 30, 2008

SPIE Press Book | January 15, 2008

PROCEEDINGS ARTICLE | April 7, 2004
Proc. SPIE. 5478, Laser Optics 2003: Solid State Lasers and Nonlinear Frequency Conversion
KEYWORDS: Femtosecond phenomena, Oscillators, Mode locking, High power lasers, Nonlinear frequency conversion, Disk lasers

PROCEEDINGS ARTICLE | October 6, 2003
Proc. SPIE. 5137, International Conference on Lasers, Applications, and Technologies 2002: Advanced Lasers and Systems
KEYWORDS: Semiconductors, Mirrors, Continuous wave operation, Lasers, Mode locking, High power lasers, Semiconductor lasers, Picosecond phenomena, Disk lasers, Pulsed laser operation

PROCEEDINGS ARTICLE | June 4, 1999
Proc. SPIE. 3616, Commercial and Biomedical Applications of Ultrafast Lasers
KEYWORDS: Semiconductors, Mirrors, Femtosecond phenomena, Mode locking, High power lasers, Solitons, Semiconductor lasers, Diodes, Picosecond phenomena, Pulsed laser operation

Showing 5 of 7 publications
Conference Committee Involvement (7)
Photonics West 2013
2 February 2013 |
Advanced Solid-State Photonics 2012
29 January 2012 |
Photonics West 2012
21 January 2012 |
CLEO/Europe 2011 in Munich, Germany
22 May 2011 |
Advanced Solid-State Photonics 2007
28 January 2007 |
Showing 5 of 7 published special sections
Course Instructor
SC818: Laser Beam Quality
This course will address all aspects of laser beam quality. Topics to be covered are: a short introduction to Gaussian beams, definitions and importance of beam quality, measurement techniques, typical beam quality issues related to various kinds of lasers (primarily solid state lasers and semiconductor lasers), an overview on methods for optimizing the beam quality particularly of diode-pumped solid state lasers, and the working principles of common beam shapers and mode cleaners.
SC931: Applied Nonlinear Frequency Conversion
This course provides detailed knowledge on the operation and design of nonlinear frequency conversion devices. The emphasis is on frequency conversion in (2) nonlinear crystals, such as frequency doubling, sum and difference frequency generation and parametric oscillation. In addition, Raman amplifiers and lasers (including bulk and fiber-based devices) are treated, and briefly also Brillouin fiber lasers. The course gives an overview of nonlinear crystal materials and addresses the details of phase matching, showing how a certain phase-matching configuration may be chosen based on given device requirements. For various cases, it is shown how to estimate the achievable conversion efficiency. The conversion of short and ultrashort optical pulses is also discussed. Some case studies demonstrate the influence of various practical issues.
SC860: Resonator Design for Solid State Lasers
This course gives a comprehensive introduction into the design of resonators for solid state bulk lasers. After a short introduction to Gaussian beams, the essential properties of optical resonators and their modes (including fundamental and higher-order modes) are discussed, as well as influences such as thermal lensing, misalignment, and aberrations. Fundamental limitations and design optimization procedures are first explained in a general manner and then applied to concrete resonator types, including short linear cavities, unidirectional ring lasers, microchip lasers, Z-shaped resonators, large-mode high power laser resonators, and various issues in the context of Q-switched and mode-locked lasers.
SC1180: Passive and Active Fiber Optics
This course gives a comprehensive introduction into fiber optics. It explains in detail many aspects of light propagation in optical fibers (including data signals and ultrashort pulses) and of coupling light into fibers. It also covers active devices like fiber amplifiers and lasers in the regimes of continuous-wave operation as well as nanosecond and ultrashort pulse operation. Many example cases are illustrated with numerical simulations which demonstrate various design aspects and limitations.
SC1181: Ultrafast Lasers and Amplifiers
This course gives detailed insight into the operation principles and essential limitations of lasers and amplifiers for ultrashort pulse generation. Mode-locked lasers of different kinds, including both bulk lasers and fiber lasers, and the different mode-locking mechanisms used in those are discussed in detail and often demonstrated with numerical simulations. Also, principles and limitations of pulse amplification in bulk and fiber devices are treated.
SC1207: High-Power Laser Technologies
This course starts with an overview on competing technologies for high-power solid-state laser sources, including bulk lasers, amplified and fiber-based sources. The primary topic is the analysis of performance potentials of different technologies in situations with different boundary conditions, such as continuous-wave operation with no restrictions or with high beam quality and/or a limited emission bandwidth, and the generation of intense laser pulses with nanosecond, picosecond or femtosecond durations. In this context, the concept of power scaling is given a meaningful basis, and scaling considerations are demonstrated in example cases.
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