Abstract

Stable 30 fs pulses centered at 1068 nm (less than 10 optical cycles) are demonstrated in a diode pumped Yb:CaYAlO4 laser by using high-quality chemical vapor deposited monolayer graphene as the saturable absorber. The mode-locked 8.43 optical-cycle pulses have a spectral bandwidth of 50  nm and a pulse repetition frequency of 113.5  MHz. To the best of our knowledge, this is the shortest pulse ever reported for graphene mode-locked lasers and mode-locked Yb-doped bulk lasers. Our experimental results demonstrate that graphene mode locking is a very promising practical technique for directly generating few-cycle optical pulses from a laser oscillator.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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