Abstract

We report on the metrological characterization of novel commercially available 894.6 nm vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs), dedicated to Cs D1 line spectroscopy experiments. The thermal behavior of the VCSELs is reported, highlighting the existence of a minimum threshold current and maximum output power in the 55°C–60°C range. The laser relative intensity noise, measured to be 108  dB/Hz at 10 Hz Fourier frequency f for a laser power of 25 μW, is reduced with increased power. The VCSELs frequency noise is 108  Hz2/Hz at f=100  Hz. The spectral linewidth of the VCSELs is about 30 MHz. VCSELs injection current can be directly modulated at 4.596 GHz with microwave power in the range of 10 to +0  dBm to generate optical sidebands. A VCSEL was used in a microcell-based Cs atomic clock based on coherent population trapping. A preliminary clock short-term fractional frequency stability of 8×1011τ1/2 up to about 100 s is reported, demonstrating the suitability of these VCSELs for miniature atomic clock applications.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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