Shaping of picosecond pulses for pumping optical parametric amplification
The use of temporally shaped pump pulses for optical parametric chirped-pulse amplification can increase the efficiency and suppress possible spectral distortions in this process. With this goal in mind a novel method for shaping narrowband picosecond pulses has been developed. The method is based on the pulse stacking principle, where replicas of the incoming pulse are created in a specially designed four-beam interferometer. The replicas are recombined with appropriate relative delays. The interferometer design allows for a unique flexibility in varying the pulse shape, since all relevant degrees of freedom, such as relative intensities and delays between the pulse replicas are independently adjustable. Here we describe the design of our device in detail and report on the experimental demonstration of its pulse-shaping capabilities.
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