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Passively mode-locked Yb:KLu(WO4)2 oscillators

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We demonstrate passive mode locking based on the novel monoclinic double tungstate crystal Yb:KLu(WO4)2. We report the shortest pulses ever produced with an Yb-doped tungstate laser using a semiconductor saturable absorber. A pulse duration of 81 fs has been achieved for an average power of 70 mW at 1046 nm. We compare the performance of the polarization oriented parallel to the Nm- and Np-crystallo-optic axes. Results in the femtosecond and picosecond regime are presented applying either Ti:sapphire or diode laser pumping. The great potential of Yb:KLu(WO4)2 as an active medium for ultrashort pulses is demonstrated for the first time, to our knowledge.

©2005 Optical Society of America

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Figures (5)

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1. Gain cross section σ gain for polarization along the Np - and Nm -crystallo-optic axes of Yb:KLuW and different population inversion β. Note that the Ng -polarization is unfavourable because of the small cross sections.
Fig. 2.
Fig. 2. Setup of the mode-locked Yb:KLu(WO4)2 laser: SAM - saturable absorber mirror; M1 -focusing mirror; M2, M3 - folding mirrors, P1, P2 - SF10 Brewster prisms; M4, M5 - output couplers (OC=1 to 5%), LP - f=6.28 cm focusing lens.
Fig. 3.
Fig. 3. Autocorrelation trace and spectrum (inset) of the Yb:KLu(WO4)2 laser in the picosecond regime (Ti:sapphire laser pumping).
Fig. 4.
Fig. 4. Autocorrelation traces and spectra (insets) of the femtosecond Yb:KLu(WO4)2 laser: (a) Nm -oriention, Ti:sapphire laser pumping; (b) Np -orientation, diode pumping.
Fig. 5.
Fig. 5. Comparison of the femtosecond Yb:KLu(WO4)2 laser performance (average power vs. pulse duration) for polarization oriented parallel to the Np - and Nm -crystallo-optic axes.


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