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Journal of the Optical Society of America B

Journal of the Optical Society of America B

| OPTICAL PHYSICS

  • Editor: Henry M. Van Driel
  • Vol. 24, Iss. 9 — Sep. 1, 2007
  • pp: 2108–2118

Passive mode locking of inhomogeneously broadened lasers

Li Yan and Song Han  »View Author Affiliations


JOSA B, Vol. 24, Issue 9, pp. 2108-2118 (2007)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/JOSAB.24.002108


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Abstract

Passive mode locking of inhomogeneously broadened lasers is studied in three typical regimes: pure self-amplitude modulation (SAM) mode locking, soliton mode locking, and mode locking in the presence of self-phase modulation (SPM) and positive group-delay dispersion (GDD). When the mode-locking strength becomes weak and/or the GDD is large, the lockable spectral width reduces and mode locking becomes unstable, which is a common and unique feature for broadband inhomogeneously broadened lasers. Mode locking by the pure SAM is essentially a phase-locking process. The soliton mode locking best resists the impact of insufficient gain filtering, while mode locking in the presence of strong SPM and positive GDD is the weakest, and a certain amount of gain filtering (narrowing) is necessary for stable mode locking. The scaling relations of mode-locking characteristics with the gain linewidth, GDD, and nonlinearities, and the influence of the degree of inhomogeneity of the gain medium are examined. A linearized saturable absorber may not be able to mode lock a strongly inhomogeneously broadened laser, and a minimum unsaturated absorber loss is required for stable mode locking in most situations.

© 2007 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(140.3430) Lasers and laser optics : Laser theory
(140.4050) Lasers and laser optics : Mode-locked lasers
(320.7090) Ultrafast optics : Ultrafast lasers

ToC Category:
Lasers and Laser Optics

History
Original Manuscript: November 6, 2006
Revised Manuscript: March 15, 2007
Manuscript Accepted: April 12, 2007
Published: August 3, 2007

Citation
Li Yan and Song Han, "Passive mode locking of inhomogeneously broadened lasers," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 24, 2108-2118 (2007)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/josab/abstract.cfm?URI=josab-24-9-2108

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