Practical Design and Applications of Ultrafast Semiconductor Disk Lasers
AuthorBaker, Caleb W.
AdvisorMoloney, Jerome V.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractVertical External Cavity Surface Emitting Lasers (VECSELs) have become well established in recent years for their design flexibility and promising power scalability. Recent efforts in VECSEL development have focused heavily on expanding the medium into the ultrafast regime of modelocked operation. Presented in this thesis is a detailed discussion regarding the development of ultrafast VECSEL devices. Achievements in continuous wave (CW) operation will be highlighted, followed by several chapters detailing the engineering challenges and design solutions which enable modelocked operation of VECSELs in the ultrafast regime, including the design of the saturable absorbers used to enforce modelocking, management of the net group delay dispersion (GDD) inside the cavity, and the design of the active region to support pulse durations on the order of 100 fs. Work involving specific applications - VECSELs emitting on multiple wavelengths simultaneously and the use of VECSEL seed oscillators for amplification and spectral broadening - will also be presented. Key experimental results will include a novel multi-fold cavity design that produced record-setting peak powers of 6.3 kW from a modelocked VECSEL, an octave-spanning supercontinuum with an average power of 2 W generated using a VECSEL seed and a 2-stage Yb fiber amplifier, and two separate experiments where a VECSEL was made to emit on multiple wavelengths simultaneously in modelocked and highly stable CW operation, respectively. Further, many diagnostic and characterization measurements will be presented, most notably the in-situ probing of a VECSEL gain medium during stable modelocked operation with temporal resolution on the order of 100 fs, but also including characterization of the relaxation rates in different saturable absorber designs and the effectiveness of different methods for managing the net GDD of a device.
Degree ProgramGraduate College