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Proceedings Paper

Compact ultrafast semiconductor disk laser for nonlinear imaging in living organisms
Author(s): Rodrigo Aviles-Espinosa; G. Filippidis; Craig Hamilton; Graeme Malcolm; Kurt J. Weingarten; Thomas Südmeyer; Yohan Barbarin; Ursula Keller; David Artigas; Pablo Loza-Alvarez
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Paper Abstract

Ultrashort pulsed laser systems (such as Ti:sapphire) have been used in nonlinear microscopy during the last years. However, its implementation is not straight forward as they are maintenance-intensive, bulky and expensive. These limitations have prevented their wide-spread use for nonlinear imaging, especially in "real-life" biomedical applications. In this work we present the suitability of a compact ultrafast semiconductor disk laser source, with a footprint of 140x240x70 mm, to be used for nonlinear microscopy. The modelocking mechanism of the laser is based on a quantumdot semiconductor saturable absorber mirror (SESAM). The laser delivers an average output power of 287 mW with 1.5 ps pulses at 500 MHz, corresponding to a peak power of 0.4 kW. Its center wavelength is 965 nm which is ideally suited for two-photon excitation of the widely used Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) marker as it virtually matches its twophoton action cross section. We reveal that it is possible to obtain two photon excited fluorescence images of GFP labeled neurons and secondharmonic generation images of pharynx and body wall muscles in living C. elegans nematodes. Our results demonstrate that this compact laser is well suited for long-term time-lapse imaging of living samples as very low powers provide a bright signal. Importantly this non expensive, turn-key, compact laser system could be used as a platform to develop portable nonlinear bio-imaging devices, facilitating its wide-spread adoption in "real-life" applications.

Paper Details

Date Published: 11 February 2011
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 7903, Multiphoton Microscopy in the Biomedical Sciences XI, 79032T (11 February 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.874865
Show Author Affiliations
Rodrigo Aviles-Espinosa, ICFO - Instituto de Ciencias Fotónicas (Spain)
G. Filippidis, Foundation for Research and Technology-Hellas (Greece)
Craig Hamilton, Solus Technologies Ltd. (United Kingdom)
M Squared Lasers Ltd (United Kingdom)
Graeme Malcolm, M Squared Lasers Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Kurt J. Weingarten, Time-Bandwidth-Products (Switzerland)
Thomas Südmeyer, ETH Zurich (Switzerland)
Yohan Barbarin, ETH Zurich (Switzerland)
Ursula Keller, ETH Zurich (Switzerland)
David Artigas, ICFO - Instituto de Ciencias Fotónicas (Spain)
Univ. Politècnica de Catalunya (Spain)
Pablo Loza-Alvarez, ICFO - Instituto de Ciencias Fotónicas (Spain)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7903:
Multiphoton Microscopy in the Biomedical Sciences XI
Ammasi Periasamy; Karsten König; Peter T. C. So, Editor(s)

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