Abstract

We present a simple and effective technique for coupling free-space laser beams into polarization maintaining fibers (PMFs) with high coupling efficiency. We measure both input and output laser beam sizes near the PMF by using the knife-edge method and build a suitable two-lens system for beam shaping according to the difference between those two beam sizes. For tapered amplifiers, we achieve high coupling efficiency above 70% with the help of the seeding mirrors. For external cavity diode lasers, we obtain high coupling efficiency above 80%. In addition, we demonstrate that theoretical maximum coupling efficiency can be approached by using a mode-filtered beam. Our technique is easy to implement and suitable for many applications such as coherent optical communication, atomic physics experiments, and precision measurements.

© 2020 Optical Society of America

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