Femtosecond comb optical parametric oscillators for high-resolution spectroscopy in the mid-infrared
Date du début: 1 août 2013,
Date de fin: 31 juil. 2015
The research necessary to extend the application areas of femtosecond frequency combs through the development of compact, robust, low-cost, commercially-exploitable sources is now possible; taking advantage of the fact that ultrafast laser pulses of femtosecond widths, separated by nanoseconds, manifest themselves as a phase-coherent comb of frequencies spread over a wide spectral band. Furthermore, the development of femtosecond frequency combs in the infrared region of the electromagnetic spectrum and beyond offers enormous opportunities for exploitation in broad spectrum detection and metrology. Robust industrial laser sources such as those produced by the SME supply chain grouping brought together in this proposal can be used by the leading research groups in this consortium to develop frequency comb based spectroscopy systems offering unprecedented detection sensitivity and measurement accuracy. Moreover, if the wavelength range of the comb sources can be extended to cover the mid-IR region then such a source would be ideal for coherent Fourier-transform spectroscopy in the absorption-rich mid-IR 'molecular fingerprint' region delivering real-time acquisition of molecular spectra and real-time imaging with chemical identification for applications in large fast-growing global markets including environmental monitoring, real-time analysis of chemical /bio threats and explosives, trace molecular detection, and medical breath analysis. The project will be led by the SME group coordinated by M-Squared Lasers and produce IP which can be exploited across the supply chain covering optics, crystals, lasers and OPOs.
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