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Widely tunable and narrow-linewidth chip-scale lasers from near-ultraviolet to near-infrared wavelengths

Abstract

Widely tunable and narrow-linewidth lasers at visible wavelengths are necessary for applications such as quantum optics, optical clocks and atomic and molecular physics. At present, the lasers are benchtop systems, which precludes these technologies from being used outside research laboratories. Here we demonstrate a chip-scale visible laser platform that enables tunable and narrow-linewidth lasers from near-ultraviolet to near-infrared wavelengths. Using micrometre-scale silicon nitride resonators and commercial Fabry–Pérot laser diodes, we achieve coarse tuning up to 12.5 nm and mode-hop-free fine tuning up to 33.9 GHz with intrinsic linewidths down to a few kilohertz. In addition, we show fine-tuning speeds of up to 267 GHz µs−1, fibre-coupled powers of up to 10 mW and typical side-mode suppression ratios above 35 dB. These specifications of our chip-scale lasers have only been achieved previously using large state-of-the-art benchtop laser systems, making our lasers stand out as powerful tools for the next generation of visible-light technologies.

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Fig. 1: Chip-scale, multi-wavelength visible lasers and applications of visible light.
Fig. 2: Example of chip-scale laser (blue wavelength range) and its operation.
Fig. 3: Coarse and fine wavelength tuning of the chip-scale lasers from near-UV to near-IR wavelengths.
Fig. 4: Fine frequency tuning speeds via microheater and laser-current modulations.
Fig. 5: Linewidth measurements of the chip-scale lasers from near-UV to near-IR wavelengths.

Data availability

The experimental dataset and its analysis are provided within the paper and its Supplementary Information, and the data are available from the corresponding authors upon reasonable request.

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Acknowledgements

This work was supported as part of the Novel Chip-Based Nonlinear Photonic Sources from the Visible to Mid-Infrared funded by the Army Research Office under award no. W911NF2110286. Fabrication of the photonic chips was done in part at the City University of New York Advanced Science Research Center Nanofabrication Facility, in part at the Columbia Nano Initiative Shared Lab Facilities at Columbia University, and in part at the Cornell NanoScale Facility, a member of the National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure (NNCI), which is supported by the National Science Foundation (Grant NNCI-2025233). M.C.S. is supported by a Facebook Fellowship Award. We thank A. Gaeta, S. Will and his group members M. Kwon and W. Yuan, and T. Zelevinsky and her students Q. Sun and K. H. Leung for lending critical pieces of equipment and for helpful discussions. We also thank U. D. Dave, G. R. Bhatt and Y. Antman for helpful discussions. M.C.-Z. thanks N. Janosik for her support and helpful discussions.

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Authors

Contributions

M.C.-Z. conceived the chip-scale visible lasers research project. M.C.-Z., A.G.-M. and A.M. had the initial discussions that shaped the first steps and goals of the project. With helpful suggestions from A.G.-M., M.C.-Z. designed the photonic devices and experiments. M.C.-Z., X.J. and M.C.S. fabricated the photonic chips. M.C.-Z. and A.M. performed experiments on some preliminary devices. M.C.-Z. performed the experimental measurements and analysed the results, with crucial suggestions from A.G.-M. along the way. M.C.-Z. prepared the manuscript. X.J., A.G.-M., M.C.S., A.M. and M.L. edited the manuscript. M.L. supervised the project.

Corresponding authors

Correspondence to Mateus Corato-Zanarella or Michal Lipson.

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Competing interests

M.C.-Z., A.G.-M, X.J., M.C.S., A.M. and M.L. are named inventors on US provisional patent application 63/275,141 regarding the technology reported in this article.

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Corato-Zanarella, M., Gil-Molina, A., Ji, X. et al. Widely tunable and narrow-linewidth chip-scale lasers from near-ultraviolet to near-infrared wavelengths. Nat. Photon. (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41566-022-01120-w

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