Applied Physics B

, Volume 69, Issue 4, pp 327–332

Carrier-envelope offset phase control: A novel concept for absolute optical frequency measurement and ultrashort pulse generation

  • H.R. Telle
  • G. Steinmeyer
  • A.E. Dunlop
  • J. Stenger
  • D.H. Sutter
  • U. Keller
Regular paper

DOI: 10.1007/s003400050813

Cite this article as:
Telle, H., Steinmeyer, G., Dunlop, A. et al. Appl Phys B (1999) 69: 327. doi:10.1007/s003400050813

Abstract.

The shortest pulses periodically emitted directly from a mode-locked Ti:sapphire laser are approaching the two-optical-cycle range. In this region, the phase of the optical carrier with respect to the pulse envelope becomes important in nonlinear optical processes such as high-harmonic generation. Because there are no locking mechanisms between envelope and carrier inside a laser, their relative phase offset experiences random fluctuations. Here, we propose several novel methods to measure and to stabilize this carrier-envelope offset (CEO) phase with sub-femtosecond uncertainty. The stabilization methods are an important prerequisite for attosecond pulse generation schemes. Short and highly periodic pulses of a two-cycle laser correspond to an extremely wide frequency comb of equally spaced lines, which can be used for absolute frequency measurements. Using the proposed phase-measurement methods, it will be possible to phase-coherently link any unknown optical frequency within the comb spectrum to a primary microwave standard. Experimental studies using a sub-6-fs Ti:sapphire laser suggesting the feasibility of carrier-envelope phase control are presented.

PACS: 06.30.Ft; 42.65.Re; 42.65.Ky 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • H.R. Telle
    • 1
  • G. Steinmeyer
    • 2
  • A.E. Dunlop
    • 2
  • J. Stenger
    • 1
  • D.H. Sutter
    • 2
  • U. Keller
    • 2
  1. 1.Bundesanstalt (PTB), Braunschweig, Germany (Fax: +49-531/592-4423, harald.telle@ptb.de)Germany
  2. 2.Institut für Quantenelektronik, ETH Zürich, Switzerland (Fax: +41-1/633-1059, sguenter@iqe.phys.ethz.ch)Switzerland