Abstract

We report a high-peak-power, picosecond, mid-infrared optical parametric generator (OPG) and optical parametric amplifier (OPA) based on orientation-patterned gallium arsenide pumped by a thulium:fiber master-oscillator-power-amplifier employing direct diode-seeded amplification. An OPG tuning range of 2550–2940 nm (signal) and 5800–8300 nm (idler) is demonstrated with peak powers as high as 3 (signal) and 2 kW (idler), and with pulse energies of 0.26 and 0.16 μJ, respectively. When seeded with a 0.6  cm1 linewidth tunable Cr:ZnSe laser, the OPA idler linewidth is narrowed to 1.4  cm1 and a small-signal parametric gain of 60 dB is achieved. A maximum peak power of 13.3 (signal) and 3.2 kW (idler) is obtained at an overall conversion efficiency of 36%. The corresponding maximum pulse energies for the signal and idler are 1.07 and 0.26 μJ, respectively.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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