Amplifying a Modelocked Fiber Laser to Produce Ultrashort Pulses

This thesis presents the work to amplify a passively mode-locked all fiber laser used to produce ultrashort pulses. The fiber laser takes advantage of nonlinear effects, intrinsic to optical fiber, to create picosecond pulses. A fiber amplifier was built and added to the optical setup to increase the total peak power of the fiber laser, to record an autocorrelation through two photon absorption. The combined amplifier and laser produced spectra and autocorrelation pairs for varying polarization settings. According to the spectra we have the theoretical bandwidth to support pulses as short as 0.4 picoseconds. The results from the autocorrelation data tell us that our pulses are on average 0.8 picoseconds, which are the shortest pulses recorded in our lab. We believe dispersion broadens the pulses beyond the fourier transform limit.

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