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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. 4, Iss. 13 — Dec. 2, 2009

Frequency comb swept lasers

Tsung-Han Tsai, Chao Zhou, Desmond C. Adler, and James G. Fujimoto  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Express, Vol. 17, Issue 23, pp. 21257-21270 (2009)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.17.021257


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Abstract

We demonstrate a frequency comb (FC) swept laser and a frequency comb Fourier domain mode locked (FC-FDML) laser for applications in optical coherence tomography (OCT). The fiber-based FC swept lasers operate at a sweep rate of 1kHz and 120kHz, respectively over a 135nm tuning range centered at 1310nm with average output powers of 50mW. A 25GHz free spectral range frequency comb filter in the swept lasers causes the lasers to generate a series of well defined frequency steps. The narrow bandwidth (0.015nm) of the frequency comb filter enables a ~-1.2dB sensitivity roll off over ~3mm range, compared to conventional swept source and FDML lasers which have −10dB and −5dB roll offs, respectively. Measurements at very long ranges are possible with minimal sensitivity loss, however reflections from outside the principal measurement range of 0-3mm appear aliased back into the principal range. In addition, the frequency comb output from the lasers are equally spaced in frequency (linear in k-space). The filtered laser output can be used to self-clock the OCT interference signal sampling, enabling direct fast Fourier transformation of the fringe signals, without the need for fringe recalibration procedures. The design and operation principles of FC swept lasers are discussed and designs for short cavity lasers for OCT and interferometric measurement applications are proposed.

© 2009 OSA

OCIS Codes
(110.4500) Imaging systems : Optical coherence tomography
(120.3180) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Interferometry
(140.3510) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, fiber
(140.3600) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, tunable

ToC Category:
Lasers and Laser Optics

History
Original Manuscript: July 9, 2009
Revised Manuscript: September 22, 2009
Manuscript Accepted: September 24, 2009
Published: November 6, 2009

Virtual Issues
Vol. 4, Iss. 13 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Citation
Tsung-Han Tsai, Chao Zhou, Desmond C. Adler, and James G. Fujimoto, "Frequency comb swept lasers," Opt. Express 17, 21257-21270 (2009)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/vjbo/abstract.cfm?URI=oe-17-23-21257


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