Carrier-envelope offset frequency stabilization of a gigahertz semiconductor disk laser
Optica, Optical Society of America, 2017/4/12/1482-1487
Optical frequency combs based on ultrafast lasers have enabled numerous scientific breakthroughs. However, their use for commercial applications is limited by the complexity and cost of femtosecond laser technology. Ultrafast semiconductor lasers might change this issue as they can be mass produced in a cost-efficient way while providing large spectral coverage from a single technology. However, it has not been proven to date if ultrafast semiconductor lasers are suitable for stabilization of their carrier-envelope offset (CEO) frequency. Here we present what we believe to be the first CEO frequency stabilization of an ultrafast semiconductor disk laser (SDL). The optically pumped SDL is passively modelocked by a semiconductor saturable absorber mirror. It operates at a repetition rate of 1.8 GHz and a center wavelength of 1034 nm. The 273 fs pulses of the oscillator are amplified to an average power level of 6 W and temporally compressed down to 120 fs. A coherent octave-spanning supercontinuum spectrum is generated in a photonic crystal fiber. The CEO frequency is detected in a standard <i>ƒ</i>–to–2<i>ƒ</i> interferometer and phase locked to an external reference by feedback applied to the current of the SDL pump diode. This proof-of-principle demonstrates that ultrafast SDLs are suitable for CEO stabilization and constitutes a key step for further developments of this comb technology expected in the coming years.
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