Development of UltrastableTi:sapphire Lasers for Optical Clock and Spectroscopy Applications

Period of Performance: 01/01/2003 - 12/31/2003

$75K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Kapteyn-murnane Laboratories Inc.
4775 Walnut St Suite 102
Boulder, CO 80301
Principal Investigator

Abstract

This Small Business Innovation Research Phase 1 project proposes to develop a femtosecond laser system optimized for optical clocks and other precision metrology applications. In principle, atomic optical transitions have the potential to provide radically higher-accuracy timekeeping, because of the very high frequency of an optical transition. The problem of counting, or down-counting, the oscillations of the optical transition has been solved by self-referenced frequency division of the comb of frequencies generated by a femtosecond laser. This Phase 1 SBIR will work towards passively and actively stabilizing the laser repetition rate, as well as its power and bandwidth, to create a "hands-off" clock source that will run uninterrupted for long periods of time. New approaches to broader bandwidth lasers will also be investigated, both via feasibility study and experiment.