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Compact Mode-Locked Laser for Optical Signal Processing

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N68335-21-C-0768
Agency Tracking Number: N212-118-0189
Amount: $139,957.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: N212-118
Solicitation Number: 21.2
Timeline
Solicitation Year: 2021
Award Year: 2021
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2021-08-26
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2022-03-02
Small Business Information
14998 W 6th Ave, Suite 700
Golden, CO 80401-5025
United States
DUNS: 112697136
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Henry Timmers
 (303) 296-6766
 htimmers@vescent.com
Business Contact
 Scott Rommel
Phone: (303) 296-6766
Email: rommel@vescent.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract

Vescent Photonics, LLC proposes to develop a compact, environmentally robust, ultrafast erbium fiber oscillator with ultra-low timing jitter for use in optical signal processing applications. The proposed mode-locked laser will provide a low noise source with wide optical bandwidth for field deployment on mobile platforms, meeting all performance requirements outlined in the solicitation in a modular package with low size, weight, and power (SWaP). This effort will leverage over eight years of experience that Vescent has accumulated in developing mode-locked Er:fiber oscillators and micro-optic-based laser systems for field deployed applications in quantum sensing, atomic clocks, and applied spectroscopy. Building upon our existing commercially available mode-locked oscillator, our optical-fiber-based architecture uses polarization-maintaining fiber and a semiconductor saturable absorber mirror (SESAM) to ensure extremely reliable mode-locking operation in a compact module. Careful design of the laser cavity results in a measured timing jitter of less than 10 fs and an optical bandwidth of 25 nm. Under the proposed work, improvements to this design will shrink the fiber optic packaging and integrate low-SWaP pump lasers and driver electronics to obtain a total package volume of less than 100 cm3 and with a total electrical power draw of less than 3 W. At the completion of Phase II, a turnkey laser module will be delivered to the Navy that will be an ideal pulsed source for optical signal processing in field deployed military applications.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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