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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: Andrew M. Weiner
  • Vol. 21, Iss. 17 — Aug. 26, 2013
  • pp: 19982–19989
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Long-term stable, sub-femtosecond timing distribution via a 1.2-km polarization-maintaining fiber link: approaching 10−21 link stability

Michael Y. Peng, Patrick T. Callahan, Amir H. Nejadmalayeri, Stefano Valente, Ming Xin, Lars Grüner-Nielsen, Eric M. Monberg, Man Yan, John M. Fini, and Franz X. Kärtner  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Express, Vol. 21, Issue 17, pp. 19982-19989 (2013)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.21.019982


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Abstract

Long-term stable, sub-femtosecond timing distribution over a 1.2-km polarization-maintaining (PM) fiber-optic link using balanced optical cross-correlators for link stabilization is demonstrated. Novel dispersion-compensating PM fiber was developed to construct a dispersion-slope-compensated PM link, which eliminated slow timing drifts and jumps previously induced by polarization mode dispersion in standard single-mode fiber. Numerical simulations of nonlinear pulse propagation in the fiber link confirmed potential sub-100-as timing stability for pulse energies below 70 pJ. Link operation for 16 days showed ~0.6 fs RMS timing drift and during a 3-day interval only ~0.13 fs drift, which corresponds to a stability level of 10−21.

© 2013 OSA

1. Introduction

Modern large-scale scientific facilities such as X-ray free-electron lasers (FELs) [1

1. P. Emma, R. Akre, J. Arthur, R. Bionta, C. Bostedt, J. Bozek, A. Brachmann, P. Bucksbaum, R. Coffee, F.-J. Decker, Y. Ding, D. Dowell, S. Edstrom, A. Fisher, J. Frisch, S. Gilevich, J. Hastings, G. Hays, P. Hering, Z. Huang, R. Iverson, H. Loos, M. Messerschmidt, A. Miahnahri, S. Moeller, H.-D. Nuhn, G. Pile, D. Ratner, J. Rzepiela, D. Schultz, T. Smith, P. Stefan, H. Tompkins, J. Turner, J. Welch, W. White, J. Wu, G. Yocky, and J. Galayda, “First lasing and operation of an ångstrom-wavelength free-electron laser,” Nat. Photonics 4(9), 641–647 (2010). [CrossRef]

3

3. C. J. Bocchetta and G. De Ninno, FERMI@ Elettra: Conceptual Design Report (Sincrotrone, 2007).

] require timing distribution systems with extremely high timing stability to synchronize RF and optical sources across hundreds of meters to several kilometers. Since conventional RF timing systems have already reached a practical limit for timing precision of about 50-100 fs for such long distances, next-generation timing systems are adopting fiber-optic technology to achieve superior performance with optical signal transport and timing distribution. Optical timing systems based on continuous-wave [4

4. J. M. Byrd, L. Doolittle, G. Huang, J. W. Staples, R. B. Wilcox, J. Arthur, J. C. Frisch, and W. E. White, “Femtosecond synchronization of laser systems for the LCLS,” in Proceedings of International Particle Accelerator Conference (2010), 58–60.

] and pulsed [5

5. J. Kim, J. A. Cox, J. Chen, and F. X. Kärtner, “Drift-free femtosecond timing synchronization of remote optical and microwave sources,” Nat. Photonics 2(12), 733–736 (2008). [CrossRef]

] operation have been explored and implemented successfully in select facilities to provide sub-10-fs timing stability.

2. Principle of operation

3. System demonstration

3.1 Experimental set-up

The stabilization feedback loop begins with the in-loop BOC, which consists of a single 4-mm PPKTP crystal operated in a double-pass configuration with appropriate dichroic elements [9

9. J. Kim, J. Chen, Z. Zhang, F. N. C. Wong, F. X. Kärtner, F. Loehl, and H. Schlarb, “Long-term femtosecond timing link stabilization using a single-crystal balanced cross correlator,” Opt. Lett. 32(9), 1044–1046 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

]. The round-trip timing error is measured with a BOC timing sensitivity of 20 mV/fs. The locking electronics consists of a PI controller (Menlo Systems, PIC210), high voltage amplifier (Menlo Systems, HVA150) and a voltage-controlled variable delay built from mounting a retroreflector on a stacked combination of a 40-μm piezoelectric actuator (Thorlabs, PAS009) and a 25-mm motorized translation stage (PI, M-112.12S) for short- and long-term stabilization, respectively. The feedback loop bandwidth was 20 Hz.

3.2 Results and discussion

4. Nonlinearity-induced timing errors

5. Conclusion

Acknowledgments

The authors acknowledge financial support by the United States Department of Energy through contract DE-SC0005262, and the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science at Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron, Hamburg, a research center of the Helmholtz Association, Germany. M.Y.P. would like to thank Jonathan A. Cox for his preceding work and help in transitioning to the PM fiber link. S.V. acknowledges support by Italian National Civil Authority (ENAC) and University of L’Aquila through Giuliana Tamburro and Ferdinando Filauro scholarships, respectively.

References and links

1.

P. Emma, R. Akre, J. Arthur, R. Bionta, C. Bostedt, J. Bozek, A. Brachmann, P. Bucksbaum, R. Coffee, F.-J. Decker, Y. Ding, D. Dowell, S. Edstrom, A. Fisher, J. Frisch, S. Gilevich, J. Hastings, G. Hays, P. Hering, Z. Huang, R. Iverson, H. Loos, M. Messerschmidt, A. Miahnahri, S. Moeller, H.-D. Nuhn, G. Pile, D. Ratner, J. Rzepiela, D. Schultz, T. Smith, P. Stefan, H. Tompkins, J. Turner, J. Welch, W. White, J. Wu, G. Yocky, and J. Galayda, “First lasing and operation of an ångstrom-wavelength free-electron laser,” Nat. Photonics 4(9), 641–647 (2010). [CrossRef]

2.

M. Altarelli, R. Brinkmann, M. Chergui, W. Decking, B. Dobson, S. Düsterer, G. Grübel, W. Graeff, H. Graafsma, and J. Hajdu, XFEL: The European X-Ray Free-Electron Laser. Technical Design Report (DESY, 2006).

3.

C. J. Bocchetta and G. De Ninno, FERMI@ Elettra: Conceptual Design Report (Sincrotrone, 2007).

4.

J. M. Byrd, L. Doolittle, G. Huang, J. W. Staples, R. B. Wilcox, J. Arthur, J. C. Frisch, and W. E. White, “Femtosecond synchronization of laser systems for the LCLS,” in Proceedings of International Particle Accelerator Conference (2010), 58–60.

5.

J. Kim, J. A. Cox, J. Chen, and F. X. Kärtner, “Drift-free femtosecond timing synchronization of remote optical and microwave sources,” Nat. Photonics 2(12), 733–736 (2008). [CrossRef]

6.

Y. Ding, F.-J. Decker, P. Emma, C. Feng, C. Field, J. Frisch, Z. Huang, J. Krzywinski, H. Loos, J. Welch, J. Wu, and F. Zhou, “Femtosecond X-Ray Pulse Characterization in Free-Electron Lasers Using a Cross-Correlation Technique,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 109(25), 254802 (2012). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

7.

H. A. Haus and A. Mecozzi, “Noise of mode-locked lasers,” IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 29(3), 983–996 (1993). [CrossRef]

8.

J. Kim, J. Chen, J. Cox, and F. X. Kärtner, “Attosecond-resolution timing jitter characterization of free-running mode-locked lasers,” Opt. Lett. 32(24), 3519–3521 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

9.

J. Kim, J. Chen, Z. Zhang, F. N. C. Wong, F. X. Kärtner, F. Loehl, and H. Schlarb, “Long-term femtosecond timing link stabilization using a single-crystal balanced cross correlator,” Opt. Lett. 32(9), 1044–1046 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

10.

J. Kim and F. X. Kärtner, “Attosecond-precision ultrafast photonics,” Laser Photonics Rev. 4(3), 432–456 (2010). [CrossRef]

11.

M. Ferianis, A. Borga, A. Bucconi, L. Pavlovic, M. Predonzani, and F. Rossi, “All-Optical Femtosecond Timing System for the Fermi@ Elettra FEL,” in Proceedings of Free Electron Laser Conference (2011), 641–647.

12.

J. A. Cox, “Sub-femtosecond precision timing distribution, synchronization and coherent synthesis of ultrafast lasers,” Thesis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2012).

13.

A. H. Nejadmalayeri, F. N. C. Wong, T. D. Roberts, P. Battle, and F. X. Kärtner, “Guided wave optics in periodically poled KTP: quadratic nonlinearity and prospects for attosecond jitter characterization,” Opt. Lett. 34(16), 2522–2524 (2009). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

14.

M. Ferianis, “State of the art in high-stability timing, phase reference distribution and synchronization systems,” in Proceedings of Particle Accelerator Conference (2009), 1915–1919.

15.

M. Y. Peng, P. T. Callahan, A. H. Nejadmalayeri, S. Valente, K. Ahmed, M. Xin, E. Monberg, M. Yan, L. Grüner-Nielsen, J. M. Fini, T. D. Roberts, P. Battle, and F. X. Kärtner, “Towards a large-scale, optical timing distribution system with sub-femtosecond residual timing jitter,” in Proceedings of IEEE International Frequency Control Symposium (2013).

16.

G. Agrawal, Nonlinear Fiber Optics (Academic Press, 2012).

OCIS Codes
(060.2360) Fiber optics and optical communications : Fiber optics links and subsystems
(060.2420) Fiber optics and optical communications : Fibers, polarization-maintaining
(060.5530) Fiber optics and optical communications : Pulse propagation and temporal solitons
(120.7000) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Transmission
(320.7160) Ultrafast optics : Ultrafast technology
(120.4825) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Optical time domain reflectometry

ToC Category:
Fiber Optics and Optical Communications

History
Original Manuscript: June 26, 2013
Revised Manuscript: August 12, 2013
Manuscript Accepted: August 12, 2013
Published: August 16, 2013

Citation
Michael Y. Peng, Patrick T. Callahan, Amir H. Nejadmalayeri, Stefano Valente, Ming Xin, Lars Grüner-Nielsen, Eric M. Monberg, Man Yan, John M. Fini, and Franz X. Kärtner, "Long-term stable, sub-femtosecond timing distribution via a 1.2-km polarization-maintaining fiber link: approaching 10−21 link stability," Opt. Express 21, 19982-19989 (2013)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?URI=oe-21-17-19982


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References

  1. P. Emma, R. Akre, J. Arthur, R. Bionta, C. Bostedt, J. Bozek, A. Brachmann, P. Bucksbaum, R. Coffee, F.-J. Decker, Y. Ding, D. Dowell, S. Edstrom, A. Fisher, J. Frisch, S. Gilevich, J. Hastings, G. Hays, P. Hering, Z. Huang, R. Iverson, H. Loos, M. Messerschmidt, A. Miahnahri, S. Moeller, H.-D. Nuhn, G. Pile, D. Ratner, J. Rzepiela, D. Schultz, T. Smith, P. Stefan, H. Tompkins, J. Turner, J. Welch, W. White, J. Wu, G. Yocky, and J. Galayda, “First lasing and operation of an ångstrom-wavelength free-electron laser,” Nat. Photonics4(9), 641–647 (2010). [CrossRef]
  2. M. Altarelli, R. Brinkmann, M. Chergui, W. Decking, B. Dobson, S. Düsterer, G. Grübel, W. Graeff, H. Graafsma, and J. Hajdu, XFEL: The European X-Ray Free-Electron Laser. Technical Design Report (DESY, 2006).
  3. C. J. Bocchetta and G. De Ninno, FERMI@ Elettra: Conceptual Design Report (Sincrotrone, 2007).
  4. J. M. Byrd, L. Doolittle, G. Huang, J. W. Staples, R. B. Wilcox, J. Arthur, J. C. Frisch, and W. E. White, “Femtosecond synchronization of laser systems for the LCLS,” in Proceedings of International Particle Accelerator Conference (2010), 58–60.
  5. J. Kim, J. A. Cox, J. Chen, and F. X. Kärtner, “Drift-free femtosecond timing synchronization of remote optical and microwave sources,” Nat. Photonics2(12), 733–736 (2008). [CrossRef]
  6. Y. Ding, F.-J. Decker, P. Emma, C. Feng, C. Field, J. Frisch, Z. Huang, J. Krzywinski, H. Loos, J. Welch, J. Wu, and F. Zhou, “Femtosecond X-Ray Pulse Characterization in Free-Electron Lasers Using a Cross-Correlation Technique,” Phys. Rev. Lett.109(25), 254802 (2012). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. H. A. Haus and A. Mecozzi, “Noise of mode-locked lasers,” IEEE J. Quantum Electron.29(3), 983–996 (1993). [CrossRef]
  8. J. Kim, J. Chen, J. Cox, and F. X. Kärtner, “Attosecond-resolution timing jitter characterization of free-running mode-locked lasers,” Opt. Lett.32(24), 3519–3521 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  9. J. Kim, J. Chen, Z. Zhang, F. N. C. Wong, F. X. Kärtner, F. Loehl, and H. Schlarb, “Long-term femtosecond timing link stabilization using a single-crystal balanced cross correlator,” Opt. Lett.32(9), 1044–1046 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  10. J. Kim and F. X. Kärtner, “Attosecond-precision ultrafast photonics,” Laser Photonics Rev.4(3), 432–456 (2010). [CrossRef]
  11. M. Ferianis, A. Borga, A. Bucconi, L. Pavlovic, M. Predonzani, and F. Rossi, “All-Optical Femtosecond Timing System for the Fermi@ Elettra FEL,” in Proceedings of Free Electron Laser Conference (2011), 641–647.
  12. J. A. Cox, “Sub-femtosecond precision timing distribution, synchronization and coherent synthesis of ultrafast lasers,” Thesis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2012).
  13. A. H. Nejadmalayeri, F. N. C. Wong, T. D. Roberts, P. Battle, and F. X. Kärtner, “Guided wave optics in periodically poled KTP: quadratic nonlinearity and prospects for attosecond jitter characterization,” Opt. Lett.34(16), 2522–2524 (2009). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  14. M. Ferianis, “State of the art in high-stability timing, phase reference distribution and synchronization systems,” in Proceedings of Particle Accelerator Conference (2009), 1915–1919.
  15. M. Y. Peng, P. T. Callahan, A. H. Nejadmalayeri, S. Valente, K. Ahmed, M. Xin, E. Monberg, M. Yan, L. Grüner-Nielsen, J. M. Fini, T. D. Roberts, P. Battle, and F. X. Kärtner, “Towards a large-scale, optical timing distribution system with sub-femtosecond residual timing jitter,” in Proceedings of IEEE International Frequency Control Symposium (2013).
  16. G. Agrawal, Nonlinear Fiber Optics (Academic Press, 2012).

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