Abstract

A compact pulse stretcher using curved diffraction gratings is presented. It introduces positive group-delay dispersion and can operate in conjunction with a standard grating-pair compressor in chirped-pulse amplification systems. It presents several advantages over other systems proposed: It has no degrees of freedom and so is not highly sensitive to alignment errors, it is easy to align, it has a compact and robust design, and it uses standard optics. The frequency-dependent delay, dispersions up to third order, and the design parameters of the stretcher–compressor system that will yield good matching are analyzed. Examples of design specifications for a 40-fs pulse with a central wavelength of λ=800 nm are given.

© 1997 Optical Society of America

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