Abstract

A single-layer graphene saturable absorber is employed for passive Q-switching of an Er, Yb:GdAl3(BO3)4 (Er,Yb:GdAB) compact laser, representing the first Er-doped oxoborate laser Q-switched by graphene. This laser is based on a c-cut 1.8 at. % Er3+, 15 at. % Yb3+:GdAB crystal diode-pumped at 0.976 μm. It generates a maximum average output power of 360 mW at 1.55 μm with a slope efficiency of 23% (with respect to the incident power). Stable 1  μJ/130  ns pulses are achieved at a repetition rate of 400 kHz. This result represents, to the best of our knowledge, the shortest pulse duration ever achieved in bulk Er lasers Q-switched by 2D materials. Graphene is a promising material for generating nanosecond pulses at high repetition rates (MHz range) in Er-doped oxoborate lasers emitting in the eye-safe range at 1.5–1.7 μm.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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