Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Abstract-Highly efficient scalable monolithic semiconductor terahertz pulse source

J. A. Fülöp, Gy. Polónyi, B. Monoszlai, G. Andriukaitis, T. Balciunas, A. Pugzlys, G. Arthur, A. Baltuska, and J. Hebling

Intense pulses at low terahertz (THz) frequencies of 0.1–2 THz are an enabling tool for constructing compact particle accelerators and for strong-field control of matter. Optical rectification in lithium niobate provided sub-mJ THz pulse energies, but it is challenging to increase it further. Semiconductor sources suffered from low efficiency. Here, a semiconductor (ZnTe) THz source is demonstrated, collinearly pumped at an infrared wavelength beyond the three-photon absorption edge and utilizing a contact grating for tilting the pump-pulse front. Suppression of free-carrier absorption at THz frequencies in this way resulted in 0.3% THz generation efficiency, two orders of magnitude higher than reported previously from ZnTe. Scaling the THz energy to the mJ level is possible simply by increasing the pumped area. This unique THz source with excellent focusability, pumped by novel, efficient infrared sources, opens up new perspectives for THz high-field applications.
© 2016 Optical Society of America
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