In this paper, we report supercontinuum generation by launching ultra-short femtosecond laser pulses into single crystal sapphire fibers. The major advantages of using sapphire fiber for supercontinuum generation are: (1) high transparency up to 5 μm, (2) low material dispersion in the 0.8-5 μm spectral range, and (3) a higher laser damage threshold (500 times higher than that of silica). Thus, a very high power, super broadband [from visible to middle IR (up to 5 μm)], supercontinuum source can be realized by employing sapphire fiber for supercontinuum generation. Our experimental results also confirm that sapphire fiber can offer a broader supercontinuum spectrum than that of bulk sapphire counterpart under the same exciting conditions. This work opens the door to new opportunities in generating high power supercontinuum radiation (in particular, at the middle-IR regime), and will have a great impact on many applications, including sensing and broadband multi-spectrum free space communications.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering