Laser diode structures with a saturable absorber for high-energy picosecond optical pulse generation by combined gain-and Q-switching
The performance of gain-switched Fabry–Perot asymmetric-waveguide semiconductor lasers with a large equivalent spot size and an intracavity saturable absorber was investigated experimentally and theoretically. The laser with a short (~20 μm) absorber emitted high-energy afterpulse-free optical pulses in a broad range of injection current pulse amplitudes; optical pulses with a peak power of about 35 W and a duration of about 80 ps at half maximum were achieved with a current pulse with an amplitude of just 8 A and a duration of 1.5 ns. Good quality pulsations were observed in a broad range of elevated temperatures. The introduction of a substantially longer absorber section leads to strong spectral broadening of the output without a significant improvement to pulse energy and peak power.