Abstract

We report a novel wedge-shaped saturable absorber structure based on commercial semiconductor-doped glasses. By use of several different semiconductor-doped glasses, fast saturable absorber passive mode locking of a Ti:Al2O3 laser was demonstrated, which generated pulse durations as short as 2 ps in the 780–860-nm range. These saturable absorbers were also used to start Kerr-lens mode locking, and transform-limited 52-fs pulses were generated. Photodarkening effects in the semiconductor-doped glasses have been observed and characterized on a femtosecond time scale.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

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