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Squeezed light at 2128 nm for future gravitational-wave observatories

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Abstract

All gravitational-wave observatories (GWOs) have been using the laser wavelength of 1064 nm. Ultra-stable laser devices are at the sites of GEO 600, Kagra, LIGO, and Virgo. Since 2019, not only GEO 600, but also LIGO and Virgo have been using separate devices for squeezing the uncertainty of the light, so-called squeeze lasers. The sensitivities of future GWOs will strongly gain from reducing the thermal noise of the suspended mirrors, which involves shifting the wavelength into the 2 µm region. This Letter aims to reuse the existing high-performance lasers at 1064 nm. Here we report the realization of a squeeze laser at 2128 nm that uses pump light at 1064 nm. We achieve the direct observation of 7.2 dB of squeezing as the first step at megahertz sideband frequencies. The squeeze factor achieved is mainly limited by the photodiode’s quantum efficiency, which we estimated to $({92}\;{\pm}\;{3})\%$. Reaching larger squeeze factors seems feasible also in the required audio and sub-audio sideband, provided photo diodes with sufficiently low dark noise will be available. Our result promotes 2128 nm as the new, to the best of our knowledge, cost-efficient wavelength of GWOs.

© 2021 Optical Society of America

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Data underlying the results presented in this paper are not publicly available at this time but may be obtained from the authors upon reasonable request.

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