Office of Technology Transfer – University of Michigan

Coherent Network-Chirped Pulse Amplifier

Technology #3330

Background

Optical pulse amplifiers usually comprise a laser cavity. Within the laser cavity, a bulk is pumped by a laser diode generating a pulse signal. The pulse signal is amplified by the bulk and an output high energy pulse signal is generated. Such technology is for example used for obtaining high energy laser, such as a megajoule Laser. However, such an optical pulse amplifier suffers the disadvantage that it is hard to cool the bulk within the cavity, mainly because the surface/volume ratio is too high. Consequently, the repetition rate of such an optical pulse amplifier is very low.

Technology

University of Michigan researchers have invented an optical pulse amplifier that can generate high peak with high average power. According to the invention, the output pulse signals that are generated by the plurality of optical fiber amplifiers are all coherent because they are based on the splitting of one input pulse. Thus, the power of the individual output pulse signals is added to obtain the power of the global signal generated by the amplifier. Such an amplifier can thus generate high peak power, when the number of optical fiber amplifiers is sufficient and/or if the duration of the input pulse is short enough.

Applications and Advantages

Applications - Optical pulse amplifier

Advantages

  • High peak power
  • High average power
  • High efficiency
  • Excellent controllable beam quality
  • Controllable pulse duration