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Pound–Drever–Hall error signals for the length control of three-port grating coupled cavities

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Abstract

Gratings enable light coupling into an optical cavity without transmission through any substrate. This concept reduces light absorption and substrate heating and was suggested for light coupling into the arm cavities of future gravitational wave detectors. One particularly interesting approach is based on all- reflective gratings with low diffraction efficiencies and three diffraction orders (three ports). However, it was discovered that, generally, three-port grating coupled cavities show an asymmetric resonance profile that results in asymmetric and low quality Pound–Drever–Hall error signals for cavity length control. We experimentally demonstrate that this problem is solved by the detection of light at both reflection ports of the cavity and the postprocessing of the two demodulated electronic signals.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

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