Description: Mode-locked semiconductor lasers have drawn considerable attention as compact, reliable, and relatively inexpensive sources of short optical pulses. Advances in the design of such lasers have resulted in vast improvements in pulsewidth and noise performance, at a very wide range of repetition rates. An attractive application for these lasers would be to serve as alternatives for large benchtop laser systems such as dye lasers and solid-state lasers. However, mode-locked semiconductor lasers have not yet approached the performance of such systems in terms of output power. Different techniques for overcoming the problem of low output power from mode-locked semiconductor lasers will be discussed. Flared and arrayed lasers have been used successfully to increase the pulse saturation energy limit by increasing the gain cross section. Further improvements have been achieved by use of the MOPA configuration, which utilizes a flared semiconductor amplifier s amplify pulses to energies of 120 pJ and peak powers of nearly 30W.
Date: February 1, 1996
Creator: Mar, A. & Vawter, G.A.
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