Created by sebastien.popoff on 08/09/2020
Controlling multimode laser modes using wavefront shaping inside the cavity
Multimode cavity lasers, such as multimode fiber lasers, are attractive for the opportunity they offer to generate high energy pulsed lasers, provided that one can achieve spatiotemporal mode-locking. However, it can be complicated to control the laser properties as 1) spatiotemporal dispersion, nonlinearity, gain and loss can nonlinearly interact, and 2) dispersion and mode coupling in such a system are difficult to predict or control. In a typical wavefront shaping experiment, one modulates the output of a laser beam, which can come at the cost of a significant energy loss, and only allows to control the spatial profile of the beam. In this paper, the authors use a spatial light modulator, but inside the laser cavity to modulate its boundary conditions. Using a genetic algorithm, they are able to efficiently control the laser properties, namely the output power, the output mode profile, the optical spectrum, and mode-locking.