Parametric three-photon interaction provides continuously tunable ultrashort pulses in extended spectral regions from the UV to the mid-IR. We focus on parametric systems operating in the pulsed mode. Optical parametric oscillators pumped by intense microsecond trains of subpicosecond pulses exhibit favorable properties. We present data on a pulsed optical parametric oscillator that has a wide tuning range from 0.7 to 1.8 μm, a conversion efficiency of a few percent, and a minimum pulse duration of as low as 65 fs. Larger tuning ranges are covered by subsequent downconversion or parametric amplification. We discuss the generation of ≲1-ps pulses at wavelengths between 2 and 18 μm. Finally, the potential of parametrically generated IR pulses is demonstrated by several applications.
© 1993 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: February 3, 1993
Revised Manuscript: May 7, 1993
Published: November 1, 1993
R. Laenen, K. Wolfrum, A. Seilmeier, and A. Laubereau, "Parametric generation of femtosecond and picosecond pulses for spectroscopic applications," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 10, 2151-2161 (1993)