Abstract

We have investigated two novel laser glasses in an effort to generate high-energy, broad-spectrum pulses from a chirped-pulse amplification Nd:glass laser. Both glasses have significantly broader spectra (>38  nm FWHM) than currently available Nd:phosphate and Nd:silicate glasses. We present calculations for small signal pulse amplification to simulate spectral gain narrowing. The technique of spectral shaping using mixed-glass architecture with an optical parametric chirped-pulse amplification front end is evaluated. Our modeling shows that amplified pulses with energies exceeding 10   kJ with sufficient bandwidth to achieve 120   fs pulsewidths are achievable with the use of the new laser glasses. With further development of current technologies, a laser system could be scaled to generate one exawatt in peak power.

© 2007 Optical Society of America

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