Abstract

We study theoretically and experimentally the synthesis of arbitrary time-domain pulse shapes, using short laser pulses scattered by holograms stored in a spectrally selective hole-burning material. In general, writing holograms in spectrally selective materials results in cross talk and interference between different frequencies because of Kramers–Kronig dispersion relations. We discuss different ways to exclude the cross talk that disturbs faithful reproduction of the desired time-domain pulse shapes. In particular, we show that one can exclude the cross talk by writing holograms in a way that simulates a time-domain offset of the object pulse. To confirm our theoretical considerations we carry out experiments by writing persistent spectral hole-burning holograms with a tunable dye laser in an organic dye–polymer system at low temperature. By reading out the time-domain response with subpicosecond white-light pulses we demonstrate the feasibility of spectral synthesis of light pulses with complicated amplitude and phase properties on the time scale of hundreds of picoseconds with a subpicosecond time resolution.

© 1995 Optical Society of America

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