OSA's Digital Library

Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 17, Iss. 12 — Jun. 8, 2009
  • pp: 9947–9961

Dispersion, coherence and noise of Fourier domain mode locked lasers

Benjamin R. Biedermann, Wolfgang Wieser, Christoph M. Eigenwillig, Thomas Klein, and Robert Huber  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 17, Issue 12, pp. 9947-9961 (2009)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (1074 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



We report on the effect of chromatic dispersion on coherence length and noise of Fourier Domain Mode Locked (FDML) lasers. An FDML laser with a sweep range of 100nm around 1550nm has been investigated. Cavity configurations with and without dispersion compensation have been analyzed using different widths of the intra-cavity optical band-pass filter. The measurements are compared to non-FDML wavelength swept laser sources. Based on these observations, a simple model is developed providing a connection between timing, photon cavity lifetime and characteristic time constant of the filter. In an optimized configuration, an instantaneous laser linewidth of 20pm is observed, corresponding to a 10× narrowing compared to the intra-cavity optical band-pass filter. A relative intensity noise of -133dBc/Hz or 0.2% at 100MHz detection bandwidth during sweep operation is observed. For optimum operation, the filter drive frequency has to be set within 2ppm or 120mHz at 51kHz.

© 2009 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(110.4280) Imaging systems : Noise in imaging systems
(120.3180) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Interferometry
(140.3600) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, tunable
(170.4500) Medical optics and biotechnology : Optical coherence tomography
(260.2030) Physical optics : Dispersion

ToC Category:
Lasers and Laser Optics

Original Manuscript: January 26, 2009
Revised Manuscript: April 24, 2009
Manuscript Accepted: April 27, 2009
Published: May 29, 2009

Virtual Issues
Vol. 4, Iss. 8 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Benjamin R. Biedermann, Wolfgang Wieser, Christoph M. Eigenwillig, Thomas Klein, and Robert Huber, "Dispersion, coherence and noise of Fourier domain mode locked lasers," Opt. Express 17, 9947-9961 (2009)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Fourier Domain Mode Locking (FDML): A new laser operating regime and applications for optical coherence tomography," Opt. Express 14, 3225-3237 (2006). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  2. R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, K. Taira, J. G. Fujimoto, and K. Hsu, "Amplified, frequency swept lasers for frequency domain reflectometry and OCT imaging: design and scaling principles," Opt. Express 13, 3513-3528 (2005). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  3. D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, C. P. Lin, J. S. Schuman, W. G. Stinson, W. Chang, M. R. Hee, T. Flotte, K. Gregory, C. A. Puliafito, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Optical Coherence Tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  4. S. H. Yun, G. J. Tearney, J. F. de Boer, N. Iftimia, and B. E. Bouma, "High-speed optical frequency-domain imaging," Opt. Express 11, 2953-2963 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  5. S. H. Yun, C. Boudoux, G. J. Tearney, and B. E. Bouma, "High-speed wavelength-swept semiconductor laser with a polygon-scanner-based wavelength filter," Opt. Lett. 28, 1981-1983 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  6. R. Huber, M. Wojtkowski, J. G. Fujimoto, J. Y. Jiang, and A. E. Cable, "Three-dimensional and C-mode OCT imaging with a compact, frequency swept laser source at 1300 nm," Opt. Express 13, 10523-10538 (2005). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. M. Y. Jeon, J. Zhang, and Z. P. Chen, "Characterization of Fourier domain mode-locked wavelength swept laser for optical coherence tomography imaging," Opt. Express 16, 3727-3737 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  8. M. Y. Jeon, J. Zhang, Q. Wang, and Z. Chen, "High-speed and wide bandwidth Fourier domain mode-locked wavelength swept laser with multiple SOAs," Opt. Express 16, 2547-2554 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  9. G. Y. Liu, A. Mariampillai, B. A. Standish, N. R. Munce, X. J. Gu, and I. A. Vitkin, "High power wavelength linearly swept mode locked fiber laser for OCT imaging," Opt. Express 16, 14095-14105 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  10. Y. Mao, C. Flueraru, S. Sherif, and S. Chang, "High performance wavelength-swept laser with mode-locking technique for optical coherence tomography," Opt. Commun. 282, 88-92 (2009). [CrossRef]
  11. D. C. Adler, R. Huber, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Phase-sensitive optical coherence tomography at up to 370,000 lines per second using buffered Fourier domain mode-locked lasers," Opt. Lett. 32, 626-628 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  12. T. Klein, W. Wieser, B. R. Biedermann, C. M. Eigenwillig, G. Palte, and R. Huber, "Raman-pumped Fourier-domain mode-locked laser: analysis of operation and application for optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 33, 2815-2817 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  13. J. J. Armstrong, M. S. Leigh, D. D. Sampson, J. H. Walsh, D. R. Hillman, and P. R. Eastwood, "Quantitative upper airway imaging with anatomic optical coherence tomography," American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine 173, 226-233 (2006). [CrossRef]
  14. D. C. Adler, S. W. Huang, R. Huber, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Photothermal detection of gold nanoparticles using phase-sensitive optical coherence tomography," Opt. Express 16, 4376-4393 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  15. D. C. Adler, J. Stenger, I. Gorczynska, H. Lie, T. Hensick, R. Spronk, S. Wolohojian, N. Khandekar, J. Y. Jiang, S. Barry, A. E. Cable, R. Huber, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Comparison of three-dimensional optical coherence tomography and high resolution photography for art conservation studies," Opt. Express 15, 15972-15986 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  16. P. M. Andrews, Y. Chen, M. L. Onozato, S. W. Huang, D. C. Adler, R. A. Huber, J. Jiang, S. E. Barry, A. E. Cable, and J. G. Fujimoto, "High-resolution optical coherence tomography imaging of the living kidney," Laboratory Investigation 88, 441-449 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  17. R. Huber, D. C. Adler, V. J. Srinivasan, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Fourier domain mode locking at 1050 nm for ultra-high-speed optical coherence tomography of the human retina at 236,000 axial scans per second," Opt. Lett. 32, 2049-2051 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  18. L. A. Kranendonk, X. An, A. W. Caswell, R. E. Herold, S. T. Sanders, R. Huber, J. G. Fujimoto, Y. Okura, and Y. Urata, "High speed engine gas thermometry by Fourier-domain mode-locked laser absorption spectroscopy," Opt. Express 15, 15115-15128 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  19. L. A. Kranendonk, R. Huber, J. G. Fujimoto, and S. T. Sanders, "Wavelength-agile H2O absorption spectrometer for thermometry of general combustion gases," Proc. Combust. Inst. 31, 783-790 (2007). [CrossRef]
  20. V. J. Srinivasan, D. C. Adler, Y. L. Chen, I. Gorczynska, R. Huber, J. S. Duker, J. S. Schuman, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Ultrahigh-Speed Optical Coherence Tomography for Three-Dimensional and En Face Imaging of the Retina and Optic Nerve Head," Invest. Ophthalmol. Visual Sci. 49, 5103-5110 (2008). [CrossRef]
  21. D. C. Adler, Y. Chen, R. Huber, J. Schmitt, J. Connolly, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Three-dimensional endomicroscopy using optical coherence tomography," Nat. Photonics 1, 709-716 (2007). [CrossRef]
  22. S. W. Huang, A. D. Aguirre, R. A. Huber, D. C. Adler, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Swept source optical coherence microscopy using a Fourier domain mode-locked laser," Opt. Express 15, 6210-6217 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  23. M. W. Jenkins, D. C. Adler, M. Gargesha, R. Huber, F. Rothenberg, J. Belding, M. Watanabe, D. L. Wilson, J. G. Fujimoto, and A. M. Rollins, "Ultrahigh-speed optical coherence tomography imaging and visualization of the embryonic avian heart using a buffered Fourier Domain Mode Locked laser," Opt. Express 15, 6251-6267 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  24. E. J. Jung, C. S. Kim, M. Y. Jeong, M. K. Kim, M. Y. Jeon, W. Jung, and Z. P. Chen, "Characterization of FBG sensor interrogation based on a FDML wavelength swept laser," Opt. Express 16, 16552-16560 (2008). [PubMed]
  25. V. J. Srinivasan, R. Huber, I. Gorczynska, J. G. Fujimoto, J. Y. Jiang, P. Reisen, and A. E. Cable, "High-speed, high-resolution optical coherence tomography retinal imaging with a frequency-swept laser at 850 nm," Opt. Lett. 32, 361-363 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  26. J. Zhang, Q. Wang, B. Rao, Z. P. Chen, and K. Hsu, "Swept laser source at 1 mu m for Fourier domain optical coherence tomography," Appl. Phys. Lett. 89, 3 (2006).
  27. M. A. Choma, M. V. Sarunic, C. H. Yang, and J. A. Izatt, "Sensitivity advantage of swept source and Fourier domain optical coherence tomography," Opt. Express 11, 2183-2189 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  28. C. M. Eigenwillig, B. R. Biedermann, G. Palte, and R. Huber, "K-space linear Fourier domain mode locked laser and applications for optical coherence tomography," Opt. Express 16, 8916-8937 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  29. R. Huber, D. C. Adler, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Buffered Fourier domain mode locking: unidirectional swept laser sources for optical coherence tomography imaging at 370,000 lines/s," Opt. Lett. 31, 2975-2977 (2006). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  30. S. Nezam, B. J. Vakoc, A. E. Desjardins, G. J. Tearney, and B. E. Bouma, "Increased ranging depth in optical frequency domain imaging by frequency encoding," Opt. Lett. 32, 2768-2770 (2007). [CrossRef]
  31. Y. Yasuno, Y. J. Hong, S. Makita, M. Yamanari, M. Akiba, M. Miura, and T. Yatagai, "In vivo high-contrast imaging of deep posterior eye by 1-mu m swept source optical coherence tomography and scattering optical coherence angiography," Opt. Express 15, 6121-6139 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  32. Y. Yasuno, V. D. Madjarova, S. Makita, M. Akiba, A. Morosawa, C. Chong, T. Sakai, K. P. Chan, M. Itoh, and T. Yatagai, "Three-dimensional and high-speed swept-source optical coherence tomography for in vivo investigation of human anterior eye segments," Opt. Express 13, 10652-10664 (2005). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  33. A. Yariv, Optical Electronics in Modern Communication (Oxford University Press, Inc., Oxford, 1997).
  34. B. Biedermann, W. Wieser, C. Eigenwillig, G. Palte, D. Adler, V. Srinivasan, J. Fujimoto, and R. Huber, "Real time en face Fourier-domain optical coherence tomography with direct hardware frequency demodulation," Opt. Lett. 33, 2556-2558 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  35. A. Bilenca, S. H. Yun, G. J. Tearney, and B. E. Bouma, "Numerical study of wavelength-swept semiconductor ring lasers: the role of refractive-index nonlinearities in semiconductor optical amplifiers and implications for biomedical imaging applications," Opt. Lett. 31, 760-762 (2006). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  36. H. F. Taylor, "Intensity noise and spontaneous emission coupling in superluminescent light-sources," IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 26, 94-97 (1990). [CrossRef]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited