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The impact of pump-power noise on transverse mode instabilities

: Stihler, C.; Jauregui, C.; Tünnermann, A.; Limpert, J.


Carter, A.L. ; Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers -SPIE-, Bellingham/Wash.:
Fiber Lasers XVI: Technology and Systems : 4-7 February 2019, San Francisco, California, United States
Bellingham, WA: SPIE, 2019 (Proceedings of SPIE 10897)
ISBN: 978-1-5106-2437-5
ISBN: 978-1-5106-2436-8
Paper 1089703, 6 S.
Conference "Fiber Lasers - Technology and Systems <16, 2019, San Francisco/Calif.>
Industrial Laser, Laser Source and Laser Applications Conference (LASE) <2019, San Francisco/Calif.>
Photonics West Conference <2019, San Francisco/Calif.>
European Commission EC
617173; ACOPS
Advanced Coherent Ultrafast Laser Pulse Stacking
Fraunhofer IOF ()

In this work we have investigated the impact of pump-power noise on transverse mode instabilities (TMI) in high-power fiber laser systems. This is a crucial study since former works have shown that pump-power variations can induce a phase shift between the modal interference pattern and the thermally-induced refractive index grating and, thus, they are the most likely trigger for TMI. To experimentally investigate this behavior, we have generated white noise for different frequency bands with an arbitrary waveform generator and applied it to the pump diode. In a first experiment we have evaluated the frequency range of interest. It was found that only frequency components of the pump noise close to the main frequency of the TMI fluctuations influence the TMI threshold of the fiber laser system. In a second experiment we have measured the TMI threshold of the free-running system and compared it to the ones obtained when applying different pump-noise amplitudes. It was found that the TMI threshold can be decreased by almost a factor of three by increasing the noise of the pump source. This result is in good agreement with former theoretical and experimental studies and suggests that pump-power noise indeed acts as a main trigger for TMI. Furthermore, the findings indicate that the development of pump sources and drivers with a low noise level in a frequency range close to the main frequency of the TMI fluctuations could help to increase the TMI threshold of fiber laser systems.