Experimental study of the effect of pump pulse duration on liquid crystal laser performance

Calum M. Brown, Ieva Pakamoryte, Philip J. W. Hands

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Much work has been done to understand the factors that impact photonic band-edge liquid crystal (LC) laser threshold and slope efficiency, two parameters often stated to quantify performance. Conventionally, LC lasers are optically pumped using Q-switched lasers with a fixed pulse duration, and thus the effect of pump pulse duration on LC laser performance has received little attention. While some studies have been published at different pump pulse durations, these use different laser sources and experimental conditions, making the data incomparable. By exploiting a recent breakthrough in laser diode pumping, our experimental results prove and quantify the detrimental effect of an increase in pump pulse duration on LC laser performance. We also show that the dependency of threshold on pump pulse duration depends on how threshold is defined, owing to an ambiguity in the definition of pulse energy in systems where peak power and pulse duration can be independently controlled. For improved comparison within the literature on LC laser device performance, we thus propose an alternative convention, whereby threshold is stated in units of peak power density.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4873-4876
Number of pages4
JournalOptics Letters
Issue number18
Early online date12 Sept 2023
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sept 2023


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