Abstract

We report a long coherence length, high power, and wide tuning range wavelength linearly swept fiber mode-locked laser based on polygon scanning filters. An output power of 52.6 mW with 112 nm wavelength tuning range at 62.6 kHz sweeping rate has been achieved. The coherence length is long enough to enable imaging over 8.1 mm depth when the sensitivity decreases by 8.7 dB (1/e 2). The Fourier components are still distinguishable when the ranging depth exceeds 15 mm, which corresponds to 30 mm optical path difference in air. The parameters that are critical to OCT imaging quality such as polygon filter linewidth, the laser coherence length, output power, axial resolution and the Fourier sensitivity have been investigated theoretically and experimentally. Since the wavelength is swept linearly with time, an analytical approach has been developed for transforming the interference signal from equidistant spacing in wavelength to equidistant spacing in frequency. Axial resolution of 7.9 µm in air has been achieved experimentally that approaches the theoretical limit.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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  1. D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  2. W. Drexler, U. Morgner, F. X. Kartner, C. Pitris, S. A. Boppart, X. D. Li, E. P. Ippen, and J. G. Fujimoto, "In vivo ultrahigh-resolution optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 24, 1221-1223 (1999).
  3. B. E. Bouma, G. J. Tearney, I. P. Bilinsky, B. Golubovic, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Self-phase-modulated Kerr-lens mode-locked Cr:forsterite laser source for optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 21, 1839-1841 (1996).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  4. X. Li, T. H. Ko, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Intraluminal fiber-optic Doppler imaging catheter for structural and functional optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 26, 1906-1908 (2001).
    [CrossRef]
  5. S. H. Yun, G. J. Tearney, J. F. deBoer, N. Iftimia and B. E. Bouma "High-speed optical frequency-domain imaging," Opt. Express:  11, 2953-2963 (2003).
    [CrossRef]
  6. S. R. Chinn, E. A. Swanson, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography using a frequency-tunable optical source," Opt. Lett. 22, 340-342 (1997).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. S. H. Yun, G. J. Tearney, J. F. deBoer, and B. E. Bouma, "Removing the depth-degeneracy in optical frequency domain imaging with frequency shifting," Opt. Express 12, 4822-4828 (2004).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  8. M. A. Choma, M. V. Sarunic, C. Yang, and J. A. Izatt, "Sensitivity advantage of swept source and Fourier domain optical coherence tomography," Opt. Express 11, 2183-2189 (2003).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  9. R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Three-dimensional and C-mode OCT imaging with a compact, frequency swept laser source at 1300 nm," Opt. Express 13, 10523-10538 (2005).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  10. W. Y. Oh, S. H. Yun, G. J. Tearney, and B. E. Bouma, "115 kHz tuning repetition rate ultrahigh-speed wavelength-swept semiconductor laser," Opt. Lett. 30, 3159-3161 (2005).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  11. R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, K. Taira, J. G. Fujimoto, and K. Hsu, "Amplified, frequency swept lasers for frequency domain reflectometry and OCT imaging: design and scaling principles," Opt. Express 13, 3513-3528 (2005).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  12. R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, J. G. Fujimoto, "Fourier Domain Mode Locking (FDML): A new laser operating regime and applications for optical coherence tomography," Opt. Express 14, 3225-3237 (2006).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  13. S. H. Yun, C. Boudoux, G. J. Tearney and B. E. Bouma, "High-speed wavelength-swept semiconductor laser with a polygon-scanner-based wavelength filter," Opt. Lett. 28, 1981-1983 (2003).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  14. R. Huber, D. C. Adler, J. G. Fujimoto, "The publication were buffering is introduced to increase sweep rate is: Title: Buffered Fourier domain mode locking: unidirectional swept laser sources for optical coherence tomography imaging at 370,000 lines/s," Opt. Lett. 31, 2975-2977 (2006).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  15. D. C. Adler, R. Huber, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Phase-sensitive optical coherence tomography at up to 370,000 lines per second using buffered Fourier domain mode-locked lasers," Opt. Lett. 32, 626 (2007).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  16. R. Huber, D. C. Adler, V. J. Srinivasan, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Fourier domain mode locking at 1050 nm for ultra-high-speed optical coherence tomography of the human retina at 236,000 axial scans per second," Opt. Lett. 32, 2049-2051 (2007).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  17. B. Bouma, G. J. Tearney, S. A. Boppart, M. R. Hee, M. E. Brezinski, and J. G. Fujimoto, "High-resolution optical coherence tomographic imaging using a mode-locked Ti:Al2O3 laser source," Opt. Lett. 20, 1486-1488 (1995).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  18. M. Wojtkowski, V. J. Srinivasan, T. H. Ko, J. G. Fujimoto, A. Kowalczyk, and J. S. Duker, "Ultrahigh-resolution, high-speed, Fourier domain optical coherence tomography and methods for dispersion compensation," Opt. Express  12, 2404-2422 (2004).
    [CrossRef]
  19. http://www.pofc.com/english/Telecom%20Fiber.htm

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2003

2001

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1991

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Adler, D. C.

Bilinsky, I. P.

Boppart, S. A.

Boudoux, C.

Bouma, B.

Bouma, B. E.

Brezinski, M. E.

Chang, W.

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Chinn, S. R.

Choma, M. A.

deBoer, J. F.

Drexler, W.

Duker, J. S.

Flotte, T.

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Fujimoto, J. G.

D. C. Adler, R. Huber, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Phase-sensitive optical coherence tomography at up to 370,000 lines per second using buffered Fourier domain mode-locked lasers," Opt. Lett. 32, 626 (2007).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Huber, D. C. Adler, V. J. Srinivasan, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Fourier domain mode locking at 1050 nm for ultra-high-speed optical coherence tomography of the human retina at 236,000 axial scans per second," Opt. Lett. 32, 2049-2051 (2007).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Huber, D. C. Adler, J. G. Fujimoto, "The publication were buffering is introduced to increase sweep rate is: Title: Buffered Fourier domain mode locking: unidirectional swept laser sources for optical coherence tomography imaging at 370,000 lines/s," Opt. Lett. 31, 2975-2977 (2006).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, J. G. Fujimoto, "Fourier Domain Mode Locking (FDML): A new laser operating regime and applications for optical coherence tomography," Opt. Express 14, 3225-3237 (2006).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, K. Taira, J. G. Fujimoto, and K. Hsu, "Amplified, frequency swept lasers for frequency domain reflectometry and OCT imaging: design and scaling principles," Opt. Express 13, 3513-3528 (2005).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Three-dimensional and C-mode OCT imaging with a compact, frequency swept laser source at 1300 nm," Opt. Express 13, 10523-10538 (2005).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

M. Wojtkowski, V. J. Srinivasan, T. H. Ko, J. G. Fujimoto, A. Kowalczyk, and J. S. Duker, "Ultrahigh-resolution, high-speed, Fourier domain optical coherence tomography and methods for dispersion compensation," Opt. Express  12, 2404-2422 (2004).
[CrossRef]

X. Li, T. H. Ko, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Intraluminal fiber-optic Doppler imaging catheter for structural and functional optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 26, 1906-1908 (2001).
[CrossRef]

W. Drexler, U. Morgner, F. X. Kartner, C. Pitris, S. A. Boppart, X. D. Li, E. P. Ippen, and J. G. Fujimoto, "In vivo ultrahigh-resolution optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 24, 1221-1223 (1999).

S. R. Chinn, E. A. Swanson, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography using a frequency-tunable optical source," Opt. Lett. 22, 340-342 (1997).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

B. E. Bouma, G. J. Tearney, I. P. Bilinsky, B. Golubovic, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Self-phase-modulated Kerr-lens mode-locked Cr:forsterite laser source for optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 21, 1839-1841 (1996).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

B. Bouma, G. J. Tearney, S. A. Boppart, M. R. Hee, M. E. Brezinski, and J. G. Fujimoto, "High-resolution optical coherence tomographic imaging using a mode-locked Ti:Al2O3 laser source," Opt. Lett. 20, 1486-1488 (1995).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Golubovic, B.

Gregory, K.

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Hee, M. R.

B. Bouma, G. J. Tearney, S. A. Boppart, M. R. Hee, M. E. Brezinski, and J. G. Fujimoto, "High-resolution optical coherence tomographic imaging using a mode-locked Ti:Al2O3 laser source," Opt. Lett. 20, 1486-1488 (1995).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Hsu, K.

Huang, D.

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Huber, R.

Iftimia, N.

Ippen, E. P.

Izatt, J. A.

Kartner, F. X.

Ko, T. H.

Kowalczyk, A.

Li, X.

Li, X. D.

Lin, C. P.

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Morgner, U.

Oh, W. Y.

Pitris, C.

Puliafito, C. A.

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Sarunic, M. V.

Schuman, J. S.

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Srinivasan, V. J.

Stinson, W. G.

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Swanson, E. A.

S. R. Chinn, E. A. Swanson, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography using a frequency-tunable optical source," Opt. Lett. 22, 340-342 (1997).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Taira, K.

Tearney, G. J.

Wojtkowski, M.

Yang, C.

Yun, S. H.

Opt. Express

S. H. Yun, G. J. Tearney, J. F. deBoer, N. Iftimia and B. E. Bouma "High-speed optical frequency-domain imaging," Opt. Express:  11, 2953-2963 (2003).
[CrossRef]

S. H. Yun, G. J. Tearney, J. F. deBoer, and B. E. Bouma, "Removing the depth-degeneracy in optical frequency domain imaging with frequency shifting," Opt. Express 12, 4822-4828 (2004).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

M. A. Choma, M. V. Sarunic, C. Yang, and J. A. Izatt, "Sensitivity advantage of swept source and Fourier domain optical coherence tomography," Opt. Express 11, 2183-2189 (2003).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Three-dimensional and C-mode OCT imaging with a compact, frequency swept laser source at 1300 nm," Opt. Express 13, 10523-10538 (2005).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, K. Taira, J. G. Fujimoto, and K. Hsu, "Amplified, frequency swept lasers for frequency domain reflectometry and OCT imaging: design and scaling principles," Opt. Express 13, 3513-3528 (2005).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, J. G. Fujimoto, "Fourier Domain Mode Locking (FDML): A new laser operating regime and applications for optical coherence tomography," Opt. Express 14, 3225-3237 (2006).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

M. Wojtkowski, V. J. Srinivasan, T. H. Ko, J. G. Fujimoto, A. Kowalczyk, and J. S. Duker, "Ultrahigh-resolution, high-speed, Fourier domain optical coherence tomography and methods for dispersion compensation," Opt. Express  12, 2404-2422 (2004).
[CrossRef]

Opt. Lett.

S. H. Yun, C. Boudoux, G. J. Tearney and B. E. Bouma, "High-speed wavelength-swept semiconductor laser with a polygon-scanner-based wavelength filter," Opt. Lett. 28, 1981-1983 (2003).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Huber, D. C. Adler, J. G. Fujimoto, "The publication were buffering is introduced to increase sweep rate is: Title: Buffered Fourier domain mode locking: unidirectional swept laser sources for optical coherence tomography imaging at 370,000 lines/s," Opt. Lett. 31, 2975-2977 (2006).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

D. C. Adler, R. Huber, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Phase-sensitive optical coherence tomography at up to 370,000 lines per second using buffered Fourier domain mode-locked lasers," Opt. Lett. 32, 626 (2007).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Huber, D. C. Adler, V. J. Srinivasan, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Fourier domain mode locking at 1050 nm for ultra-high-speed optical coherence tomography of the human retina at 236,000 axial scans per second," Opt. Lett. 32, 2049-2051 (2007).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

B. Bouma, G. J. Tearney, S. A. Boppart, M. R. Hee, M. E. Brezinski, and J. G. Fujimoto, "High-resolution optical coherence tomographic imaging using a mode-locked Ti:Al2O3 laser source," Opt. Lett. 20, 1486-1488 (1995).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

W. Y. Oh, S. H. Yun, G. J. Tearney, and B. E. Bouma, "115 kHz tuning repetition rate ultrahigh-speed wavelength-swept semiconductor laser," Opt. Lett. 30, 3159-3161 (2005).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

S. R. Chinn, E. A. Swanson, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography using a frequency-tunable optical source," Opt. Lett. 22, 340-342 (1997).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

W. Drexler, U. Morgner, F. X. Kartner, C. Pitris, S. A. Boppart, X. D. Li, E. P. Ippen, and J. G. Fujimoto, "In vivo ultrahigh-resolution optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 24, 1221-1223 (1999).

B. E. Bouma, G. J. Tearney, I. P. Bilinsky, B. Golubovic, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Self-phase-modulated Kerr-lens mode-locked Cr:forsterite laser source for optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 21, 1839-1841 (1996).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

X. Li, T. H. Ko, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Intraluminal fiber-optic Doppler imaging catheter for structural and functional optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 26, 1906-1908 (2001).
[CrossRef]

Science

D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical coherence tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Other

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Figures (7)

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1.

Schematic diagrams: (a) the frequency domain mode-locked (FDML) wavelength-swept fiber laser, (b) the polygon filer, and (c) The MZI. SOA is the semiconductor optical amplifier, PC1 &2 are polarization controllers.

Fig. 2.
Fig. 2.

The frequency domain mode locked (FDML) laser output power as a function of the sweeping frequency, showing f 0=62.57 kHz and δf=0.11 kHz. Squares are experiment data, line is their connection. The asymmetry profile indicates sweeping direction, from short to long wavelengths.

Fig. 3.
Fig. 3.

The spectrum of the FDML laser, showing sweeping range of Δλ FSR =112.2 nm and full width at half maximum of 95.3 nm.

Fig. 4.
Fig. 4.

The output power of the laser as a function of the SOA driving current, showing that the current thresholds for mode locked (triangles) and short cavity lasers (squares) are ~100 mA and ~250 mA, respectively. The slopes for both configurations are the same within experimental error, ~0.134 mW/mA.

Fig. 5.
Fig. 5.

The interference signal captured by an oscilloscope at a depth of 1.65 mm, corresponding to a path difference of 3.3 mm. The insert is the zoom-in of the interference fringes.

Fig. 6.
Fig. 6.

The experimental and theoretical PSFs for signal with evolution profiles of (a): Top-hat, (b) Gaussine(1/e,t) . Points are experimental data and dashed curves are their connections. Solid curves are theoretical calculations, showing a 7.9 µm and 13.4 µm FWHM for top-hat and Gaussine(1/e,t) profiles.

Fig. 7.
Fig. 7.

Measured PSFs at different depths showing the ranging depths are (a) 8.1 mm for a FDML laser, and (b) 3.4 mm for a short cavity laser when the sensitivity decrease by 8.7 dB.

Equations (7)

Equations on this page are rendered with MathJax. Learn more.

I 1 Δ λ fwhm f ( δ λ ) · cos 2 ( π · 2 z λ + ϕ ) d ( δ λ ) ,
x ( t ) = a ( z , t ) cos ( 4 π z λ 0 + Δ λ FSR f sweep t ) ,
t ' = t 1 Δ λ FSR f sweep λ 0 t ,
x ( t ) = a ( z , t ) cos ( 2 π f t ) ,
X ( z F ) 2 = exp [ 4 ln 2 ( z f u Δ z 0 q ) 2 ] sin c ( z f z Δ z o ) 2 ,
f sweep = M c n eff L , ( M = 1 , 2 , ) ,
δ λ = Δ λ FSR δ f f 0

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