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FEMTOCHIP develops a Silicon photonics-based high-energy passively Q-switched laser

The FEMTOCHIP consortium is proud to announce that our publication "Silicon photonics-based high-energy passively Q-switched laser" has been published in Nature Photonics magazine!


"Chip-scale, high-energy optical pulse generation is becoming increasingly important as integrated optics expands into space and medical applications where miniaturization is needed. Q-switching of the laser cavity was historically the first technique to generate high-energy pulses, and typically such systems are in the realm of large bench-top solid-state lasers and fibre lasers, especially in the long wavelength range >1.8 µm, thanks to their large energy storage capacity. However, in integrated photonics, the very property of tight mode confinement that enables a small form factor becomes an impediment to high-energy applications owing to small optical mode cross-sections. Here we demonstrate a high-energy silicon photonics-based passively Q-switched laser with a compact footprint using a rare-earth gain-based large-mode-area waveguide. We demonstrate high on-chip output pulse energies of >150 nJ and 250 ns pulse duration in a single transverse fundamental mode in the retina-safe spectral region (1.9 µm), with a slope efficiency of ~40% in a footprint of ~9 mm2. The high-energy pulse generation demonstrated in this work is comparable to or in many cases exceeds that of Q-switched fibre lasers. This bodes well for field applications in medicine and space."


Singh, N., Lorenzen, J., Sinobad, M. et al. Silicon photonics-based high-energy passively Q-switched laser. Nat. Photon. (2024).



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