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Opt Express. 2014 Jun 30;22(13):16445-55. doi: 10.1364/OE.22.016445.

Gigahertz self-referenceable frequency comb from a semiconductor disk laser.


We present a 1.75-GHz self-referenceable frequency comb from a vertical external-cavity surface-emitting laser (VECSEL) passively modelocked with a semiconductor saturable absorber mirror (SESAM). The VECSEL delivers 231-fs pulses with an average power of 100 mW and is optimized for stable and reliable operation. The optical spectrum was centered around 1038 nm and nearly transform-limited with a full width half maximum (FWHM) bandwidth of 5.5 nm. The pulses were first amplified to an average power of 5.5 W using a backward-pumped Yb-doped double-clad large mode area (LMA) fiber and then compressed to 85 fs with 2.2 W of average power with a passive LMA fiber and transmission gratings. Subsequently, we launched the pulses into a highly nonlinear photonic crystal fiber (PCF) and generated a coherent octave-spanning supercontinuum (SC). We then detected the carrier-envelope offset (CEO) frequency (f(CEO)) beat note using a standard f-to-2f-interferometer. The f(CEO) exhibits a signal-to-noise ratio of 17 dB in a 100-kHz resolution bandwidth and a FWHM of ≈10 MHz. To our knowledge, this is the first report on the detection of the f(CEO) from a semiconductor laser, opening the door to fully stabilized compact frequency combs based on modelocked semiconductor disk lasers.


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