Abstract

A method is described that provides absolute frequency stabilization and calibration of the signal and idler waves generated by an injection-seeded optical parametric oscillator (OPO). The method makes use of a He–Ne stabilized transfer cavity (TC) to control the frequencies of the cw sources used to seed both the pump laser and OPO cavity. The TC serves as a stable calibration source for the signal and idler waves by providing marker fringes as the seed laser is scanned. Additionally, an acoustic-optic modulator (AOM) is used to shift the OPO seed laser's frequency before locking it onto the TC. The sidebands of the AOM are tunable over more than one free spectral range of the TC, thereby permitting stabilization of the signal and idler waves at any frequency. A±25-MHz residual error in the absolute frequency stabilities of the pump, signal, and idler waves is experimentally demonstrated, which is roughly 30% of the 160-MHz near-transform-limited linewidths of the signal and idler pulses.

© 1996 Optical Society of America

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