Development Of Fiber Lasers And Devices For Coherent Raman Scattering Microscopy
As ultrafast laser technology has found expanding application in machining, spectroscopy, microscopy, surgery, and numerous other areas, the desire for inexpensive and robust laser sources has grown. Until recently, nonlinear effects in fiber systems due to the tight confinement of the light in the core have limited their performance. However, with advances in managing nonlinearity through pulse propagation physics and the use of large core fibers, the performance of fiber lasers can compete with that of their solid-state counterparts. As specific applications, such as coherent Raman scattering microscopy, emerge that stand to benefit from fiber technology, new performance challenges in areas such as laser noise are anticipated. This thesis studies nonlinear pulse propagation in fiber lasers and fiber parametric devices. Applications of dissipative solitons and self-similar pulse propagation to low-repetition rate oscillators that have the potential to simplify short-pulse amplification schemes will be examined. The rest of this thesis focuses on topics relevant to fiber laser development for coherent Raman scattering microscopy sources. Coherent pulse division and recombination inside the laser cavity will be introduced as an energy-scaling mechanism and demonstrated for a fiber soliton laser. The relative intensity noise properties of mode-locked fiber lasers, with a particular emphasis on normal dispersion lasers, will be explored in simulation and experiment. A fiber optical parametric oscillator will be studied in detail for low noise frequency conversion of picosecond pulses, and its utility for coherent Raman imaging will be demonstrated. Spectral compression of femtosecond pulses is used to generate picosecond pulses to pump this device, and this technique provides a route to future noise reduction in the system. Furthermore, this device forms a multimodal source capable of providing the picosecond pulses for coherent Raman scattering microscopy and the high energy femtosecond pulses for other multiphoton imaging techniques. Finally, ideas for future extensions of this work will be discussed.
Fiber Lasers; Fiber Optical Parametric Oscillators; Coherent Raman Scattering Microscopy
Strogatz,Steven H; Gaeta,Alexander L.
Ph. D., Applied Physics
Doctor of Philosophy
dissertation or thesis