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Thursday, July 17, 2014
Abstract-Characterizing the beam properties of terahertz quantum-cascade lasers
Terahertz quantum-cascade lasers (QCLs) are very promising radiation sources for many scientific and commercial applications. Shaping and characterizing the beam profile of a QCL is crucial for any of these applications. Usually the beam profile should be as close as possible to a fundamental Gaussian TEM00 mode. In order to completely characterize the laser beam the power and the wavefront have to be measured. We describe methods for characterizing the beam properties of QCLs. Several QCLs with single-plasmon waveguide and emission frequencies between 2 and 5 THz are investigated. The beam profiles of these lasers are shaped into almost fundamental Gaussian modes using dedicated lenses. The beam propagation factor M2 is as low as 1.2. The wavefront is measured along the axis of propagation with a THz Hartmann sensor. Its curvature behaves as expected for a Gaussian beam. The applied methods can be transferred to any other THz beam.