The current state of the art in mid-infrared fiber lasers is reviewed in this chapter. The relevant fiber-host materials such as silicates, fluorides, chalcogenides, and ceramics, the fiber, pump, and resonator geometries, and the spectroscopic properties of rare-earth ions are introduced. Lasers at transitions ranging from 1.9 to 4 μm occurring in the rare-earth ions Tm3+, Ho3+, and Er3+ and their population mechanisms are discussed on the basis of the fundamental spectroscopic properties of these ions. Continuous-wave, fundamental-mode power levels ranging from a few mW near 4 μm up to ≈ 10W near 2 μm have been demonstrated in recent years. Power-scaling methods and their limitations, the possibilities to optimize the population mechanisms and increase the efficiencies of these lasers, as well as the prospects of future mid-infrared fiber lasers in a number of rare-earth ions at transitions in the wavelength range beyond 3 μm and extending to 5 μm are described.
|Title of host publication||Solid-State Mid-Infrared Laser Sources|
|Editors||I.T. Sorokina, K.L. Vodopyanov|
|Place of Publication||Berlin|
|Number of pages||35|
|Publication status||Published - 2003|
|Name||Topics in Applied Physics|
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