Abstract

The wideband noise characteristics of a PbEuSe molecular beam epitaxy diode laser have been measured up to 500 MHz. The cutoff of the frequency dependent (1/f type) laser noise contribution was found to be 170 MHz for this particular laser. Above this cutoff frequency the photon shot noise dominates, as was demonstrated. A noise reduction of more than 2 orders of magnitude was observed in the shot noise limited domain when compared with the 1/f noise dominated region below 1 MHz. This finding indicates that a similar 2 orders of magnitude sensitivity improvement can be achieved in tunable diode laser absorption spectroscopy when frequency modulation techniques are applied instead of the more conventional derivative modulation below 1 MHz.

© 1989 Optical Society of America

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