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15 February 2012 Broadly tunable high-power random fibre laser
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As shown recently, a long telecommunication fibre may be treated as a natural one-dimensional random system, where lasing is possible due to a combination of random distributed feedback via Rayleigh scattering by natural refractive index inhomogeneities and distributed amplification through the Raman effect. Here we present a new type of a random fibre laser with a narrow (~1 nm) spectrum tunable over a broad wavelength range (1535-1570 nm) with a uniquely flat (~0.1 dB) and high (>2 W) output power and prominent (>40 %) differential efficiency, which outperforms traditional fibre lasers of the same category, e.g. a conventional Raman laser with a linear cavity formed in the same fibre by adding point reflectors. Analytical model is proposed that explains quantitatively the higher efficiency and the flatter tuning curve of the random fiber laser compared to conventional one. The other important features of the random fibre laser like "modeless" spectrum of specific shape and corresponding intensity fluctuations as well as the techniques of controlling its output characteristics are discussed. Outstanding characteristics defined by new underlying physics and the simplicity of the scheme implemented in standard telecom fibre make the demonstrated tunable random fibre laser a very attractive light source both for fundamental science and practical applications such as optical communication, sensing and secure transmission.
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Sergey A. Babin, Atalla E. El-Taher, Paul Harper, Evgenii V. Podivilov, and Sergei K. Turitsyn "Broadly tunable high-power random fibre laser", Proc. SPIE 8237, Fiber Lasers IX: Technology, Systems, and Applications, 82373E (15 February 2012);

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