We report on an ytterbium-doped single-transverse-mode rod-type photonic crystal fiber that combines the advantages of low nonlinearity and intrinsic polarization stability. The mode-field-area of the fundamental mode is as large as 2300 µm2. An output power of up to 163 W with a degree of polarization better than 85% has been extracted from a simple fiber laser setup without any additional polarizing element within the cavity than the fiber itself. The beam quality has been characterized by a M2 value of 1.2. The single-polarization window ranges from 1030 to 1080 nm, hence possesses an excellent overlap with the gain profile of ytterbium-doped silica fibers. To the best of our knowledge this fiber design has the largest mode-field-diameter ever reported for polarizing or even polarization maintaining rare-earth-doped double-clad fibers.
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