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Mode-locked semiconductor laser for long and absolute distance measurement based on laser pulse repetition frequency sweeping: a comparative study between three types of lasers

D. C. Alves, M. Abreu, A. Cabral, J. M. Rebordao

Abstract
In this work we present a study on three types of semiconductor mode-locked lasers as possible sources for a high precision absolute distance metrology measurement concept based on pulse repetition frequency (PRF) sweep. In this work, we evaluated one vertical emission laser and two transversal emission sources. The topology of the gain element is quantum-well, quantum-dot and quantum-dash, respectively. Only the vertical emission laser has optical pump, whilst the others operate with electric pumping. The quantum-dash laser does not have a saturable absorber in its configuration but relies on a dispersion compensating fiber for generating pulses. The bottleneck of vertical emission laser is his high power density pump (4.5W/165μm), increasing the vulnerability of damaging the gain element. The other lasers, i.e., the single (quantum-dash) and double section (quantum-dot) lasers present good results either in terms of applicability to the metrology system or in terms of robustness. Using RF injection on the gain element, both lasers show good PRF stabilization results (better than σy(10ms) = 10−9 ) which is a requirement for the mentioned metrology technique.

Keywords
Mode-locked Laser; Laser Stabilization; Pulse Repetition Frequency Sweep; Distance Metrology; Quantum-well; Quantum-dot; Quantum-dash

Third International Conference on Applications of Optics and Photonics
MFM Costa

Proceedings of SPIE
Volume 10453
2017 August

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Instituto de Astrofísica e Ciências do Espaço Universidade do Porto Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa
Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia COMPETE 2020 PORTUGAL 2020 União Europeia