Abstract

We demonstrate highly efficient terahertz (THz) generation by optical rectification (OR) of near-optimum pump pulses centered at 1.03 μm in cryogenically cooled lithium niobate. Using a close to optimal pulse duration of 680 fs and a pump energy of 1.2 mJ, we report conversion efficiencies above 3.8±0.4%, which is more than an order of magnitude higher than previously reported. The results confirm the advantage of using cryogenic cooling of the lithium niobate crystal that significantly reduces the THz absorption, enabling the scaling of THz pulse energies to the millijoule level via OR.

© 2013 Optical Society of America

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