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Chinese Optics Letters, Vol. 17, Issue 1, 012302 (2019)

Compact solid-state waveguide lasers operating in the pulsed regime: a review [Invited]

Yuechen Jia1,*, and Feng Chen2,**

Author Affiliations

  • 1Laboratory for Optical Systems, Department of Microsystems Engineering-IMTEK, University of Freiburg, 79110 Freiburg, Germany
  • 2School of Physics, State Key Laboratory of Crystal Materials, Key Laboratory of Particle Physics and Particle Irradiation (Ministry of Education), Shandong University, Jinan 250100, China

Abstract

Over the last years, there has been tremendous progress with compact pulsed lasers based on various solid-state gain media, such as crystals and glasses doped with laser-active ions. With the integration of increasingly diverse saturable absorber materials, these small sources are capable of delivering stable pulses with durations as short as femtoseconds and repetition rates exceeding 10 GHz. These promising sources are known as solid-state waveguide lasers, which have become synonymous with miniaturization, integration, and functionality. This article overviews the progress in the development of passively Q-switched and mode-locked solid-state waveguide lasers employing diverse saturable absorbers. The most commonly used laser configurations, state-of-the-art waveguide fabrication techniques, and experimental demonstrations of pulsed waveguide lasers are summarized and reviewed. Selected well-noted topics, which may shape the future directions in this field, are also presented.