We report the observation of bound states of 350 pulses in a ring fiber laser mode locked by nonlinear rotation of the polarization. The phenomenon is described theoretically using a multiscale approach to the gain dynamics; the fast evolution of a small excess of gain is responsible for the stabilization of a periodic pattern, while the slow evolution of the mean value of gain explains the finite length of the quasiperiodic soliton train.
© 2008 Optical Society of America
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