Abstract

We report a compact, efficient, high-energy, and high-repetition-rate mid-IR picosecond optical parametric oscillator (OPO) based on the new nonlinear material CdSiP2 (CSP). The OPO is synchronously pumped by a master oscillator power amplifier system at 1064.1nm, providing 1μs long macropulses constituting 8.6ps micropulses at 450MHz, and it can be tuned over 486nm across 60916577nm, covering the technologically important wavelength range for surgical applications. Using a compact (30cm) cavity and improved, high-quality nonlinear crystal, idler macropulse energy as high as 1.5mJ has been obtained at 6275nm at a photon conversion efficiency of 29.5%, with >1.2mJ over more than 68% of the tuning range, for an input macropulse energy of 30mJ. Both the signal and idler beams are recorded to have good beam quality with a Gaussian spatial profile, and the extracted signal pulses are measured to have durations of 10.6ps. Further, from the experimentally measured transmission data at 1064nm, we have estimated the two-photon absorption coefficient of CSP to be β=2.4cm/GW, with a corresponding energy bandgap, Eg=2.08eV.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

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