Abstract

We present an experimental technique for realizing a specific absorption spectral pattern in a rare-earth-doped crystal at cryogenic temperatures. This pattern is subsequently probed on two spectral channels simultaneously, thereby producing an error signal allowing frequency locking of a laser on the said spectral pattern. Appropriate combination of the two channels leads to a substantial reduction in detection noise, paving the way to realizing an ultra-stable laser for which the detection noise can be made arbitrarily low when using multiple channels. We use this technique to realize a laser with a frequency instability of $ 1.7 \times 1{0^{{\bf - }15}} $ at 1 s, not limited by the detection noise but by environmental perturbation of the crystal. This is comparable with the lowest instability demonstrated at 1 s to date for rare-earth-doped crystal stabilized lasers.

© 2020 Optical Society of America

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