Abstract

Erbium-doped ZBLAN (Er:ZBLAN) is a commonly used glass for mid-infrared fiber lasers. Quantifying the energy dynamics of the erbium ions is important for improving the performance of mid-infrared fiber lasers. Previous studies have found a discrepancy between the strength of inter-ion energy transfer measured in bulk Er:ZBLAN and the strength required to explain current fiber laser performance. We have measured the strength of the $^4{{\rm I}_{13/2}} + {^4}{{\rm I}_{13/2}}\to {^4}{{\rm I}_{15/2}} + {^4}{{\rm I}_{9/2}}$ energy transfer process directly in a range of fibers for the first time, to the best of our knowledge.

© 2021 Optical Society of America

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