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Research group | Mode-locked Lasers / Mode Combs

White light spectrum—ultra broadband mode comb from a photonic crystal fiber. Photo: Group Morgner

Mode combs—very precise frequency scales which connect optical frequencies of different wavelengths and optical with radio frequencies—form an essential element for some of the precision metrology experiments carried out by QUEST. They rely on mode-locked laser oscillators emitting femtosecond pulses and are the main research subject of this group. Subtopics include some fundamental investigations into the interaction of matter with ultrashort laser pulses aimed at improvements in the compactness, and reliability of the comb oscillators.

Comb generators are well established and commercially available in the near infrared wavelength region; some experiments, for example those which QUEST Research Area “Quantum Engineering” would undertake, require frequency combs in the more distant spectral ranges, especially in the UV. Therefore, new combs based on novel mode-locked lasers and on parametric oscillators are now the subject of research. Furthermore, investigation and application of transfer concepts for existing comb generators into new spectral ranges, for example by plasmon enhanced nonlinear conversion, are currently under investigation and show great promise.