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Rev Sci Instrum. 2016 Jun;87(6):063121. doi: 10.1063/1.4954729.

1 Hz linewidth Ti:sapphire laser as local oscillator for (40)Ca(+) optical clocks.

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State Key Laboratory of Magnetic Resonance and Atomic and Molecular Physics, Wuhan Institute of Physics and Mathematics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wuhan 430071, China.
State Key Laboratory of Precision Spectroscopy, East China Normal University, Shanghai 200062, China.


A Ti:sapphire laser at 729 nm is frequency stabilized to an ultra-stable ultra-low thermal expansion coefficient (ULE) cavity by means of Pound-Drever-Hall method. An acousto-optic modulator is used as the fast frequency feedback component. 1 Hz linewidth and 2 × 10(-15) frequency stability at 1-100 s are characterized by optical beating with a separated Fabry-Perot cavity stabilized diode laser. Compared to the universal method that the error signal feedback to inject current of a diode laser, this scheme is demonstrated to be simple and also effective for linewidth narrowing. The temperature of zero coefficient of the thermal expansion of the ULE cavity is measured with the help of a femto-second frequency comb. And the performance of the laser is well defined by locking it to the unperturbed clock transition line-center of 4 S1/2-3 D5/2 clock transition of a single laser cooled (40)Ca(+) ion. A Fourier-transform limited resonance of 6 Hz (Δv/v = 1.5 × 10(-14)) is observed. This laser is also used as the local oscillator for the comparison experiment of two (40)Ca(+) ion optical clocks and improves the stability of comparison for an order of magnitude better than the previous results.


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