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Proceedings Paper • Open Access

Compact mode-locked diode laser system for high precision frequency comparisons in microgravity
Author(s): H. Christopher; E. V. Kovalchuk; A. Wicht; G. Erbert; G. Tränkle; A. Peters

Paper Abstract

Nowadays cold atom-based quantum sensors such as atom interferometers start leaving optical labs to put e.g. fundamental physics under test in space. One of such intriguing applications is the test of the Weak Equivalence Principle, the Universality of Free Fall (UFF), using different quantum objects such as rubidium (Rb) and potassium (K) ultra-cold quantum gases. The corresponding atom interferometers are implemented with light pulses from narrow linewidth lasers emitting near 767 nm (K) and 780 nm (Rb). To determine any relative acceleration of the K and Rb quantum ensembles during free fall, the frequency difference between the K and Rb lasers has to be measured very accurately by means of an optical frequency comb. Micro-gravity applications not only require good electro-optical characteristics but are also stringent in their demand for compactness, robustness and efficiency. For frequency comparison experiments the rather complex fiber laser-based frequency comb system may be replaced by one semiconductor laser chip and some passive components. Here we present an important step towards this direction, i.e. we report on the development of a compact mode-locked diode laser system designed to generate a highly stable frequency comb in the wavelength range of 780 nm.

Paper Details

Date Published: 17 November 2017
PDF: 5 pages
Proc. SPIE 10563, International Conference on Space Optics — ICSO 2014, 105632U (17 November 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2304184
Show Author Affiliations
H. Christopher, Humboldt-Univ. zu Berlin (Germany)
Ferdinand-Braun-Institut (Germany)
E. V. Kovalchuk, Humboldt-Univ. zu Berlin (Germany)
Ferdinand-Braun-Institut (Germany)
A. Wicht, Humboldt-Univ. zu Berlin (Germany)
Ferdinand-Braun-Institut (Germany)
G. Erbert, Ferdinand-Braun-Institut (Germany)
G. Tränkle, Ferdinand-Braun-Institut (Germany)
A. Peters, Humboldt-Univ. zu Berlin (Germany)
Ferdinand-Braun-Institut (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10563:
International Conference on Space Optics — ICSO 2014
Zoran Sodnik; Bruno Cugny; Nikos Karafolas, Editor(s)

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