Femtosecond fiber lasers together with nonlinear fibers are compact, reliable, all-fiber supercontinuum sources. Maintaining an all-fiber configuration, however, necessitates pulse compression in an optical fiber, which can lead to nonlinearities for subhundred femtosecond, nanojoule pulses. In this work we show that using large-mode-area fibers for pulse compression mitigates the nonlinearity, resulting in compressed pulses with significantly reduced satellite pulses. Consequently, supercontinua generated with these pulses are shown to have as much as a 10dB increase in coherence fringe contrast. By using a hybrid highly nonlinear fiber–photonic crystal fiber, the continuum can be extended to visible wavelengths while still maintaining high coherence.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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2008 (1)

2007 (3)

2006 (2)

2004 (4)

2003 (1)

2002 (1)

Alonzo, J.

Andrejco, M.

Bise, R.

Coen, S.

Diddams, S. A.

Dimarcello, F.

Dudley, J. M.

Feder, K.

Feder, K. S.

Fini, J. M.

Genty, G.

Grüner-Nielsen, L.

Gu, X.

Jörgensen, C. G.

Kim, K.

Kimmel, M.

Knight, J. C.

Knox, W.

Leitenstorfer, A.

Lu, F.

Monberg, E.

Newbury, N. R.

Nicholson, J. W.

Nishizawa, N.

O'Shea, P.

Shreenath, A. P.

Stockert, T.

Takayanagi, J.

Tauser, F.

Trebino, R.

Trevor, D. J.

Washburn, B. R.

Westbrook, P. S.

Windeler, R. S.

Xu, L.

Yablon, A. D.

Yan, M.

Yan, M. F.

Zeek, E.

Zinth, W.

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Figures (4)

Fig. 1
Fig. 1

(a) Schematic of the all-fiber supercontinuum source, (b) and (c) autocorrelations measured after the pulse compression fiber comparing SMF and LMA performance for (b) 4 nJ /pulse and (c) 8 nJ /pulse.

Fig. 2
Fig. 2

Supercontinuum produced in (a) 2 cm of HNLF and (b) 2 cm of HNLF followed by 2 cm of PCF for 4 nJ /pulse, comparing SMF and LMA fiber pulse compression.

Fig. 3
Fig. 3

(a) Unbalanced interferometer for interfering subsequent pulses in the pulse train, (b) spectrum and interference fringes from the mode-locked laser, (c) fringe contrast for the laser (solid squares), amplifier (solid circles), pulses compressed in SMF (open triangles), and pulses compressed in LMA fiber (open circles).

Fig. 4
Fig. 4

Measured fringe contrast for (a) 4 nJ /pulse and (b) 8 nJ /pulse. Circles are for pulses compressed in SMF, and triangles for pulses compressed in LMA fiber. Solid symbols are for HNLF only, and open symbols for HNLF plus PCF.