Abstract

We report the ultrafast laser fabrication and mid-IR characterization (3.39 μm) of four-port evanescent field directional couplers. The couplers were fabricated in a commercial gallium lanthanum sulfide glass substrate using sub-picosecond laser pulses of 1030 nm light. Straight waveguides inscribed using optimal fabrication parameters were found to exhibit propagation losses of 0.8dB·cm1. A series of couplers were inscribed with different interaction lengths, and we demonstrate power-splitting ratios of between 8% and 99% for mid-IR light with a wavelength of 3.39 μm. These results clearly demonstrate that ultrafast laser inscription can be used to fabricate high-quality evanescent field couplers for future applications in astronomical interferometry.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

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