Abstract

We propose a miniature pulse compressor that can be used to compensate the group velocity dispersion that is produced by a commercial femtosecond laser cavity. The compressor is composed of two identical highly efficient deep-etched transmissive gratings. Compared with prism pairs, highly efficient deep-etched transmissive grating pairs are lightweight and small. With an optimized groove depth and a duty cycle, 98% diffraction efficiency of the 1 transmissive order can be achieved at a wavelength of 800nm under Littrow conditions. The deep-etched gratings are fabricated in fused silica by inductively coupled plasma etching. With a pair of the fabricated gratings, the input positively chirped 73.9fs pulses are neatly compressed into the nearly Fourier transform-limited 43.2fs pulses. The miniature deep-etched grating-based pulse compressor should be of interest for practical applications.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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