Multi-stage ytterbium fiber-amplifier seeded by a gain-switched laser diode

M. Ryser, S. Pilz, A. Burn, V. Romano


We demonstrated all-fiber amplification of 11 ps pulses from a gain-switched laser diode at 1064 nm. The diode was driven at a repetition rate of 40 MHz and delivered 13 µW of fiber-coupled average output power. For the low output pulse energy of 325 fJ we have designed a multi-stage core pumped pre-amplifier in order to keep the contribution of undesired amplified spontaneous emission as low as possible. By using a novel time-domain approach for determining the power spectral density ratio (PSD) of signal to noise, we identified the optimal working point for our pre-amplifier. After the pre-amplifier we reduced the 40 MHz repetition rate to 1 MHz using a fiber coupled pulse-picker. The final amplification was done with a cladding pumped Yb-doped large mode area fiber and a subsequent Yb-doped rod-type fiber. With our setup we reached a total gain of 73 dB, resulting in pulse energies of >5.6 µJ and peak powers of >0.5 MW. The average PSD-ratio of signal to noise we determined to be 18/1 at the output of the final amplification stage.

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ISSN: 2296-312X
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