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Proceedings Paper

Long coherence length and linear sweep without an external optical k-clock in a monolithic semiconductor laser for inexpensive optical coherence tomography
Author(s): Jason Ensher; Paul Boschert; Katherine Featherston; Jonathan Huber; Michael Crawford; Michael Minneman; Chris Chiccone; Dennis Derickson
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Paper Abstract

We demonstrate a new swept-wavelength laser for optical coherence tomography using a monolithic semiconductor device with no moving parts. The laser is based on a Vernier-Tuned Distributed Bragg Reflector (VTDBR) structure. We show highly-linear sweeps at 200 kHz sweep repetition rates, with peak output power of 20 mW. Using a test interferometer, we demonstrate point-spread functions with 45-55 dB dynamic range. The source provides long coherence length (> 40mm) at up to 200 kHz sweep rates. The laser system has sufficient linearity in optical frequency and stability over time to provide an electronic sample trigger clock (an Electronic K-Clock) that denotes equal optical frequency intervals during the sweep. The laser tuning mechanism is all-electronic, easily adjustable and programmable. We demonstrate both flat and Gaussian power vs. wavelength profiles, programmable sweep rates with the same device, and an adjustable duty cycle of up to 85% at full speed. Because the laser is a monolithic semiconductor structure based on reliable, wafer-scale processes, the manufacturing cost of the laser will decrease rapidly in volume production.

Paper Details

Date Published: 30 January 2012
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 8213, Optical Coherence Tomography and Coherence Domain Optical Methods in Biomedicine XVI, 82130T (30 January 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.911477
Show Author Affiliations
Jason Ensher, Insight Photonic Solutions (United States)
Paul Boschert, Insight Photonic Solutions (United States)
Katherine Featherston, Insight Photonic Solutions (United States)
Jonathan Huber, Insight Photonic Solutions (United States)
Michael Crawford, Insight Photonic Solutions (United States)
Michael Minneman, Insight Photonic Solutions (United States)
Chris Chiccone, California Polytechnic State Univ. (United States)
Dennis Derickson, California Polytechnic State Univ. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8213:
Optical Coherence Tomography and Coherence Domain Optical Methods in Biomedicine XVI
Joseph A. Izatt; James G. Fujimoto; Valery V. Tuchin, Editor(s)

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