Abstract

We show numerically and experimentally the transition between two distinct mode-locking regimes via spectral filtering of frequency-chirped pulses in passively mode-locked net-normal dispersion fiber lasers (NDFLs), resulting in the realization of similariton-dissipative soliton fiber lasers. Two operating modes, amplifier similaritons (ASs) and dissipative solitons (DSs), can switch to each other by solely altering the filter bandwidth in the laser oscillator. The laser favors AS operation for small filter bandwidth and it jumps to DS operation by increasing the filter bandwidth. A narrow filter narrows pulses both in the time domain and in the frequency domain due to the large chirp, and when the pulse re-enters in the gain fiber, it can evolve into an attractive similariton in a definite gain fiber. For a broadband filter, the weak filtering effect indirectly enhanced the self-phase modulation in the laser oscillator, so as to force the laser working in the regime of DSs. Contrary to the previous reports on pulse shaping in NDFLs based on the shape of spectral filters or filter-induced dispersion change, to the best of our knowledge, this is the first time that the proposition that the adjustable-bandwidth filter can be implemented as the key element for realizing switchable AS-DS fiber lasers has been put forward.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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