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We report the demonstration of a new wavelength-swept source. Utilizing narrowband, widely tunable fiber optical parametric process as the gain and the wavelength selection mechanism in a ring laser topology, simultaneous access to two distinct bands (NIR and SWIR) over 329 nm was achieved. A nonmechanical cavity-tuning mechanism allowed for ultrafast sweep rate, limited primarily by the speed of the tunable pump source confined to a conventional 1550-nm band. With the experimentally verified order-of-magnitude enhancement in sweep range and speed, the source opens a path for spectral scanning at an unprecedented speed and range while relying on existing tuning technologies.
Date of Publication: Feb.15, 2011