Form 9.B Project Summary






Project Title:

Tunable, Single-Frequency, Fiber

Fabry-Perot Surface Emitting Lasers

Technical Abstract (Limit 200 words)

Micron Optics Inc. proposes a novel, compact,

tunable, and single- frequency semiconductor- fiber

laser that combines a semiconductor quantum-well

vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser (SEL) within a

fiber Fabry-Perot (FFP) cavity. The "half-cavity"

SEL consists of one semiconductor Bragg reflector

as the bottom mirror and a multiple quantum well

(MQW) gain region. The top output mirror is

formed strictly by a direct fiber dielectric mirror or

a fiber waveguide dielectric mirror. The

combination of "half-cavity" SEL and fiber mirror

forms the fiber Fabry-Perot surface-emitting laser

(FFP-SEL). Wavelength tuning can be achieved by

air-gap tuning inside the FFP-SEL cavity.

FFP-SELs should enable (1) robust

single-frequency and thus narrow-line lasing in the

near-IR spectral region, (2) continuous wavelength

tuning, (3) wide frequency (wavelength) tuning

range >10,000 GHz, (4) moderate power levels

(>2mW), (5) small and compact device structure,

and (6) low power consumption. These laser

performance characteristics should provide elegant

and enabling solutions to NASA's need for

precision metrology, interferometry, and Doppler

measurement at a variety of near-IR wavelength


Potential Commercial Applications (Limit 200 words)

The proposed single-frequency tunable laser

sources are the basic building components in

fiber-optic communication systems, sensing, and

spectroscopy. The success of FFP-SELs should

enable (1) the exploitation of the vast bandwidth

potential of optical fibers that leads to subsequent

advances in Information Technology, (2) distributed

fiber grating sensing for structural health

monitoring and smart structures, and (3) advanced

applications in spectroscopic remote-sensing and

trace-level monitoring of a broad range of

chemicals such as those of critical interest in

manufacturing processes and traditional

environmental monitoring.

In general, hybrid tunable laser structures

incorporating discrete bulk optical compoenets

have complex mechanical requirements and

incompatible mode-field coupling between lasers

and tuning elements, and thus do not lead to rugged

and cost-effective implementations for

commercialization. The requirement for tunable

lasers that are fiber-compatible, robust, and

cost-effective makes the FFP-SEL an attractive


Name and Address of Principal Investigator (Name,

Organization Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip)

Kevin Hsu

Micron Optics Inc.

1900 Century Place, Suite 200

Atlanta , GA 30345

Name and Address of Offeror (Firm Name, Mail Address,


Calvin M. Miller

Micron Optics Inc.

1900 Century Place, Suite 200

Atlanta , GA 30345