High peak power ultrashort laser systems operating in the mid-IR spectral range are a key element for new unexplored strong field phenomena. A standard way to produce mid-IR laser pulses relies on optical parametric chirp pulse amplification (OPCPA). This technique was implemented to generate pulses with gigawatt peak power at 3.9 μm [1], 5 μm [2] and 7 μm [2]. An alternative way for development mid-IR systems is based on transition metal-doped Fe:ZnSe crystal, which emission band supports up to 50 fs pulse duration near 4.3 μm. In our previous papers [4,5], we have already demonstrated amplification of nanosecond and femtosecond pulses in optically pumped Fe:ZnSe crystal. Here, we present a review of our recent results on direct and chirped pulse amplification of femtosecond seed pulses up to gigawatt level in Fe:ZnSe crystals and its application for driving nonlinear phenomena.

© 2019 IEEE

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