Abstract

A technique for stabilizing the repetition frequency of a passively Q-switched laser is presented using an optically driven surface-normal semiconductor modulator. A method is capable of significant reduction of the timing jitter in a passively Q-switched laser by optical triggering the saturable absorber semiconductor reflector. The experimental demonstration using passively Q-switched ytterbium-doped fiber laser shows the jitter reduction by factor of 1.66×103 from 50 µs down to 30 ns.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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References

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  1. J. J. Zayhowski and C. DillIII, "Diode-pumped passively Q-switched picosecond microchip lasers," Opt. Lett. 19, 1427-1429 (1994).
    [CrossRef]
  2. J. J. Zayhowski and P. L. Kelley, "Optimization of Q-switched Lasers," IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 27, 2220-2225 (1991).
    [CrossRef]
  3. J. J. Degnan, "Optimization of Passively Q-switched Lasers," IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 31, 1890-1901 (1995).
    [CrossRef]
  4. R. Herda, S. Kivistö, and O. G. Okhotnikov, "Dynamic gain induced pulse shortening in Q-switched lasers," Opt. Lett. 33, 1011-1013 (2008).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  5. T. Hakulinen and O. G. Okhotnikov, "8 ns fiber laser Q-switched by the resonant saturable absorber mirror," Opt. Lett. 32, 2677-2679 (2007).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  6. J. B. Khurgin, F. Jin, G. Solyar, C. Wang, and S. Trivedi, "Cost-effective low timing jitter passively Q-switched diode-pumped solid-state laser with composite pumping pulses," Appl. Opt. 41, 1095-1097 (2002).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. R. Herda and O. G. Okhotnikov, "Effect of amplified spontaneous emission and absorber mirror recovery time on the dynamics of the mode-locked fiber lasers," Appl. Phys. Lett. 86, 011113 (2005).
    [CrossRef]

2008

2007

2005

R. Herda and O. G. Okhotnikov, "Effect of amplified spontaneous emission and absorber mirror recovery time on the dynamics of the mode-locked fiber lasers," Appl. Phys. Lett. 86, 011113 (2005).
[CrossRef]

2002

1995

J. J. Degnan, "Optimization of Passively Q-switched Lasers," IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 31, 1890-1901 (1995).
[CrossRef]

1994

1991

J. J. Zayhowski and P. L. Kelley, "Optimization of Q-switched Lasers," IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 27, 2220-2225 (1991).
[CrossRef]

Degnan, J. J.

J. J. Degnan, "Optimization of Passively Q-switched Lasers," IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 31, 1890-1901 (1995).
[CrossRef]

Dill, C.

Hakulinen, T.

Herda, R.

R. Herda, S. Kivistö, and O. G. Okhotnikov, "Dynamic gain induced pulse shortening in Q-switched lasers," Opt. Lett. 33, 1011-1013 (2008).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Herda and O. G. Okhotnikov, "Effect of amplified spontaneous emission and absorber mirror recovery time on the dynamics of the mode-locked fiber lasers," Appl. Phys. Lett. 86, 011113 (2005).
[CrossRef]

Jin, F.

Kelley, P. L.

J. J. Zayhowski and P. L. Kelley, "Optimization of Q-switched Lasers," IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 27, 2220-2225 (1991).
[CrossRef]

Khurgin, J. B.

Kivistö, S.

Okhotnikov, O. G.

Solyar, G.

Trivedi, S.

Wang, C.

Zayhowski, J. J.

J. J. Zayhowski and C. DillIII, "Diode-pumped passively Q-switched picosecond microchip lasers," Opt. Lett. 19, 1427-1429 (1994).
[CrossRef]

J. J. Zayhowski and P. L. Kelley, "Optimization of Q-switched Lasers," IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 27, 2220-2225 (1991).
[CrossRef]

Appl. Opt.

Appl. Phys. Lett.

R. Herda and O. G. Okhotnikov, "Effect of amplified spontaneous emission and absorber mirror recovery time on the dynamics of the mode-locked fiber lasers," Appl. Phys. Lett. 86, 011113 (2005).
[CrossRef]

IEEE J. Quantum Electron.

J. J. Zayhowski and P. L. Kelley, "Optimization of Q-switched Lasers," IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 27, 2220-2225 (1991).
[CrossRef]

J. J. Degnan, "Optimization of Passively Q-switched Lasers," IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 31, 1890-1901 (1995).
[CrossRef]

Opt. Lett.

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Figures (9)

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1.

Q-switched fiber laser with saturable absorber mirror acting also as a modulator triggered with a control signal. Fiber Bragg grating (FBG) and the modulator define the linear cavity. The fiber coupled pump diodes are protected by free-space isolators. The absorber modulator was protected against residual (non-absorbed in ytterbium fiber) CW 980-nm pump by second 980/1035-nm dichroic coupler used for launching into the cavity 980-nm control signal.

Fig. 2.
Fig. 2.

Low-intensity reflectivity spectrum of the modulator structure used in this study. Repetitive passive Q-switching was achieved near 1035 nm resonant wavelength of the monolithic semiconductor microcavity formed by DBR and Fresnel reflection at semiconductor-air interface.

Fig. 3.
Fig. 3.

Modulation response monitored with the probe signal at 1035 nm. Control signal at 980 nm induces a reflectivity change due to partial saturation of the absorption.

Fig. 4.
Fig. 4.

Q-switched pulse repetition rate for three different pump powers corresponding to the free-running frequencies fFREE-RUN of 2, 5 and 10 kHz. Modulation frequency was ramping up in this experiment starting from the fFREE-RUN.

Fig. 5.
Fig. 5.

Optical spectra for identical pump power and different repetition rates set by the control signal.

Fig. 6.
Fig. 6.

Timing jitter shown as a histogram recorded for 2 s. With the activated control signal, the timing of the Q-switched pulse is temporally locked to the control pulse resulted in the jitter reduction from 50 µs (a) to 30 ns (b) at the repetition rate of fREPRATE=5 kHz. The timing jitter has been defined as shown in the Figure by arrow gap.

Fig. 7.
Fig. 7.

The relative time location of the control and Q-switched pulses for the locking state. For larger time delay between the pulses, the synchronization of the Q-switched pulse repetition rate to the control signal could not be achieved. (Control and Q-switched pulse amplitudes are not in scale).

Fig. 8.
Fig. 8.

Timing jitter of the Q-switched pulse train for the locking state versus pump power.

Fig. 9.
Fig. 9.

The dependence of the locking bandwidth ΔΩ lock on the control pulse duration.

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