Optica Publishing Group

36 Hz integral linewidth laser based on a photonic integrated 4.0-meter coil resonator

Version 2 2022-07-07, 17:01
Version 1 2022-07-07, 17:01
Posted on 2022-07-07 - 17:01
Laser stabilization sits at the heart of many precision scientific experiments and applications, including quantum information science, metrology and atomic timekeeping. These systems narrow the laser linewidth and stabilize the carrier by use of Pound-Drever-Hall (PDH) locking to a table-scale, ultra-high quality factor (Q), vacuum spaced Fabry-Perot reference cavity. Integrating these cavities, to bring characteristics of PDH stabilization to the chip-scale, is critical to reduce their size, cost, and weight, and enable a wide range of portable and system-on-chip applications. We report a significant advance in integrated laser linewidth narrowing, stabilization and noise reduction, by use of a photonic integrated 4.0-meter-long coil resonator to stabilize a semiconductor laser. We achieve a 36 Hz 1/π-integral linewidth, an Allan deviation (ADEV) of 1.8×10¯¹³ at 10 ms measurement time, and a 2.3 kHz/sec drift, to the best of our knowledge the lowest integral linewidth and highest stability demonstrated for an integrated reference cavity. Two coil designs, stabilizing lasers operating at 1550 nm and 1319 nm are demonstrated. The resonator is bus coupled to a 4.0-meter-long coil, with a 49 MHz free spectral range (FSR), a mode volume of 1.0×10¹⁰ μm³ and a 142 million intrinsic Q, fabricated in a CMOS compatible, ultra-low loss silicon nitride waveguide platform. Our measurements and simulations show that the thermorefractive noise floor for this particular cavity is reached for frequencies down to 20 Hz in an ambient environment with simple passive vibration isolation and without vacuum or thermal isolation. The TRN limited performance is estimated to be an 8 Hz 1/π integral linewidth and ADEV of 5×10¯¹⁴ at 10 ms, opening a stability regime that heretofore has only been available in fundamentally un-integrated systems. Our results demonstrate the potential to bring the characteristics of lab-scale stabilized lasers to the integrated, wafer-scale compatible chip-scale, enabling portable and lower cost atomic clocks and navigation, microwave photonics, quantum applications, and energy-efficient coherent communications systems.


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