A germanium acousto-optic modulator was recently reported (Shim et al., Optics Letters, 31, 838, 2006) that is capable of generating phase and amplitude shaped femtosecond pulses directly in the mid-infrared. In this paper, the design, implementation and performance of this novel mid-IR shaper is described in detail as is the sub-50 fs optical parametric amplifier that provides large bandwidth for generation of complex pulse shapes. These details include the acoustic power and wavelength dependence of the deflection efficiency, the phase stability of the shaper, the synchronization of electronics, and a study on how the mid-IR bandwidth of the optical parametric amplifier depends on its optical configuration. With these details quantified, the accuracy of the device is tested by creating a series of shaped pulses that are characterized by cross-correlation with well-known mid-IR reference pulses and by simulations. Test waveforms include optimally compressed, phase-chirped and amplitude-modulated mid-IR pulses. The shaped pulses are of sufficient quality that they will enable new experiments in 2D IR spectroscopy and in the coherent control of vibrations in ground electronic states.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics