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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 18, Iss. 15 — Jul. 19, 2010
  • pp: 15820–15831

Fourier domain mode-locked swept source at 1050 nm based on a tapered amplifier

Sebastian Marschall, Thomas Klein, Wolfgang Wieser, Benjamin R. Biedermann, Kevin Hsu, Kim P. Hansen, Bernd Sumpf, Karl-Heinz Hasler, Götz Erbert, Ole B. Jensen, Christian Pedersen, Robert Huber, and Peter E. Andersen  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Express, Vol. 18, Issue 15, pp. 15820-15831 (2010)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.18.015820


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Abstract

While swept source optical coherence tomography (OCT) in the 1050 nm range is promising for retinal imaging, there are certain challenges. Conventional semiconductor gain media have limited output power, and the performance of high-speed Fourier domain mode-locked (FDML) lasers suffers from chromatic dispersion in standard optical fiber. We developed a novel light source with a tapered amplifier as gain medium, and investigated the FDML performance comparing two fiber delay lines with different dispersion properties. We introduced an additional gain element into the resonator, and thereby achieved stable FDML operation, exploiting the full bandwidth of the tapered amplifier despite high dispersion. The light source operates at a repetition rate of 116 kHz with an effective average output power in excess of 30 mW. With a total sweep range of 70 nm, we achieved an axial resolution of 15 µm in air (~11 µm in tissue) in OCT measurements. As our work shows, tapered amplifiers are suitable gain media for swept sources at 1050 nm with increased output power, while high gain counteracts dispersion effects in an FDML laser.

© 2010 OSA

OCIS Codes
(110.4500) Imaging systems : Optical coherence tomography
(140.3600) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, tunable
(140.5960) Lasers and laser optics : Semiconductor lasers
(250.5980) Optoelectronics : Semiconductor optical amplifiers
(260.2030) Physical optics : Dispersion

ToC Category:
Lasers and Laser Optics

History
Original Manuscript: April 21, 2010
Revised Manuscript: June 28, 2010
Manuscript Accepted: June 29, 2010
Published: July 12, 2010

Virtual Issues
Vol. 5, Iss. 12 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Citation
Sebastian Marschall, Thomas Klein, Wolfgang Wieser, Benjamin R. Biedermann, Kevin Hsu, Kim P. Hansen, Bernd Sumpf, Karl-Heinz Hasler, Götz Erbert, Ole B. Jensen, Christian Pedersen, Robert Huber, and Peter E. Andersen, "Fourier domain mode-locked swept source 
at 1050 nm based on a tapered amplifier," Opt. Express 18, 15820-15831 (2010)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?URI=oe-18-15-15820


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