Abstract

A high-performance multiple-channel erbium-doped fiber laser (EDFL) is proposed and experimentally demonstrated, using graphene-polymer nanocomposite as a multiwavelength equalizer and an asymmetric two-stage polarization-maintaining fiber (PMF) Sagnac loop as a flexible comb filter. At first, the filtering characteristics of the PMF Sagnac loop filter (SLF) are investigated. Both theoretical and experimental results show that it can provide a flexibly switchable and tunable comblike filtering. Then, the two-stage PMF SLF is inserted into a graphene-assisted EDFL cavity for generating multiwavelength oscillation. The extreme-high third-order optical nonlinearity of graphene is exploited to suppress the mode competition of the EDFL, and a stable multiple-channel lasing is observed. By carefully adjusting the polarization controllers in the two-stage PMF SLF, not only can the lasing-line number per channel be switchable between single and multiple wavelengths, but also the wavelength spacing in the triple-wavelength condition can be tunable. In the case of triple wavelengths per channel, up to 12 wavelengths with four channels stable oscillations can be achieved. The multiple-channel EDFL can keep a high extinction ratio of >40dB and a narrow linewidth of <0.01nm.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

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