Abstract

A mid-infrared femtosecond optical parametric amplifier tunable in the chemically important spectral region between 3.1 and 3.9 μm (at >10-μJ idler pulse energy) has been constructed on the basis of MgO:LiNbO3 with 7% doping. With femtosecond pumping near 800 nm (Ti:sapphire regenerative amplifier) and narrow-band (long-pulse) seeding, this simple single-stage device provides maximum conversion efficiencies of 40% and exhibits extremely low seed threshold (<10-mW peak seed power for >1-μJ idler output). The generated idler pulses are almost transform limited with <200-fs pulse duration. The pulse-to-pulse fluctuations reproduce the stability of the pump source at 1-kHz repetition rate.

© 1998 Optical Society of America

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