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Optical Engineering

Comparison of three semiconductor laser systems for gravitational wave detection
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Paper Abstract

The primary objective of the Decihertz Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (DECIGO) mission is to detect and observe black holes' and galactic binaries' gravitational waves (GWs), at frequencies ranging from 10-2 to 101 Hz (from 0.1 to 100 s in averaging time). This low-frequency range is inaccessible to ground-based interferometers, due to unshieldable background noise and to the fact that ground-based interferometers are limited to a few kilometers in length. Our research is focused on efforts to stabilize semiconductor, Nd:YAG, and fiber lasers, for use as GW detectors' optical sources. In present-day and future detectors, frequency and phase noise may place certain limitations on sensitivity and stability. Our goal is primarily to design robust experiments. In this report, we compare existing methods: Faraday, Faraday peak, and saturated absorption spectroscopy. In these, the laser frequency is stabilized to Rb as an atomic frequency reference by a feedback-loop control system. From the frequency stability of these models, we can predict the characteristics of the three systems through dynamic stability analysis, by analyzing the dynamic Allan variance. We find the optical frequency stability, expressed as the Allan deviation (the square root of the Allan variance), to be 3.3×10-11, 2.9×10-12, and 1.2×-12 in the respective methods.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 March 2009
PDF: 8 pages
Opt. Eng. 48(3) 034302 doi: 10.1117/1.3089887
Published in: Optical Engineering Volume 48, Issue 3
Show Author Affiliations
Tomoyuki Uehara, Kyoto Univ. (Japan)
Akira Sato, Niigata Univ. (Japan)
Shinya Maehara, Niigata Univ. (Japan)
Toshiya Nimonji, Nigata Univ. (Japan)
Takashi Sato, Nigata Univ. (Japan)
Masashi Ohkawa, Nigata Univ. (Japan)
Takeo Maruyama, Nigata Univ. (Japan)
Seiji Kawamura, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (Japan)


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