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Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

| EXPLORING THE INTERFACE OF LIGHT AND BIOMEDICINE

  • Editor: Gregory W. Faris
  • Vol. 1, Iss. 4 — Apr. 12, 2006

Numerical study of wavelength-swept semiconductor ring lasers: the role of refractive-index nonlinearities in semiconductor optical amplifiers and implications for biomedical imaging applications

A. Bilenca, S. H. Yun, G. J. Tearney, and B. E. Bouma  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Letters, Vol. 31, Issue 6, pp. 760-762 (2006)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OL.31.000760


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Abstract

Recent results have demonstrated unprecedented wavelength-tuning speed and repetition rate performance of semiconductor ring lasers incorporating scanning filters. However, several unique operational characteristics of these lasers have not been adequately explained, and the lack of an accurate model has hindered optimization. We numerically investigated the characteristics of these sources, using a semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA) traveling-wave Langevin model, and found good agreement with experimental measurements. In particular, we explored the role of the SOA refractive-index nonlinearities in determining the intracavity frequency-shift–broadening and the emitted power dependence on scan speed and direction. Our model predicts both continuous-wave and pulse operation and shows a universal relationship between the output power of lasers that have different cavity lengths and the filter peak frequency shift per round trip, therefore revealing the advantage of short cavities for high-speed biomedical imaging.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(140.3280) Lasers and laser optics : Laser amplifiers
(140.3600) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, tunable
(140.5960) Lasers and laser optics : Semiconductor lasers
(170.4500) Medical optics and biotechnology : Optical coherence tomography
(190.5970) Nonlinear optics : Semiconductor nonlinear optics including MQW

ToC Category:
Lasers and Laser Optics

History
Original Manuscript: October 27, 2005
Revised Manuscript: November 30, 2005
Manuscript Accepted: December 4, 2005

Virtual Issues
Vol. 1, Iss. 4 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Citation
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)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/vjbo/abstract.cfm?URI=ol-31-6-760

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