Analysis of the interplay between soliton fission and modulation instability in supercontinuum generation
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We investigate the generation mechanisms for ultra-wide spectra in nonlinear optical fibers. Soliton fission and modulation instability represent fundamental mechanisms for the generation process. The primary origin of the spectral broadening changes with the pump-pulse duration. Soliton fission dominates for low input power and short pulses. Its efficiency for supercontinuum generation and especially the extension to the blue side can be increased by proper design of the dispersion profile. The modulation instability has a strong impact for high input powers and greatly enhances the generation process, but leads to a degradation of the coherence properties. Also for short pulses with durations of 60 fs the modulation instability is present and can hardly be suppressed. The interplay between these two effects leads to various characteristics of the resulting spectra, which are modified by the relative impact of the modulation instability.
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