High-Energy, Multi-Octave-Spanning Mid-IR Sources via Adiabatic Difference Frequency Generation
Technical Report,15 Mar 2013,14 Jul 2016
MASSACHUSETTS INST OF TECH CAMBRIDGE CAMBRIDGE United States
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The creation of energetic, arbitrarily shapeable, multi-octave-spanning, coherent sources of short-wave, mid-wave, and long-wave mid-IR light is valuable to many independent fields of research and technology development, from detection of ultrafast energy transfer in proteins and biological molecules across functional groups, to high-flux, table-top generation of coherent keV photons, time-resolved tomography of molecular orbital structure, and coherent control of vibrational dynamics of molecules. And it could further applications as diverse as laser ablation of polymers, infrared countermeasures for defense, laser ranging, and compact electron beam acceleration. Under this grant, we have achieved the main goals of our research plan. We have evaluated a brand-new concept in nonlinear optics, adiabatic difference frequency generation ADFG for the efficient transfer of broadband, high-energy near-IR lasers to the mid-IR, allowing the generation of high-energy, multi-octave spanning, short- and mid-wave IR pulsed sources in the 2-5 m range and demonstration of compressed single-cycle mid-IR pulses. Adiabatic frequency conversion applies the concept of robust population transfer by rapid adiabatic passage to nonlinear optical frequency conversion. The concept effectively avoids two main hurdles of optical frequency generation limited bandwidth and limited conversion efficiency.
- Optical Countermeasures