Abstract

We report how the linewidth and line shape of a tunable semiconductor-optical-amplifier-based fiber ring laser can be actively adjusted by applying an intracavity frequency modulation to the laser. Frequency-modulated laser operation is achieved by driving the phase modulator frequency close to the cavity axial-mode spacing, leading to a constant-amplitude laser output having a periodically varying instantaneous frequency. The resulting linewidth varies proportionally with the inverse of the frequency detuning, and it is adjustable from submegahertz to over more than 5GHz. By appropriate selection of the modulating waveform we have synthesized a near-Gaussian output line shape; other line shapes can be produced by modifying the modulating waveform. Experimental observations are in good agreement with a simple model.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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