Keywords

χ(2) interaction, Transparent Ceramic, PMN-PT, ZnSe, Sintering Additive, Non-stoichiometry, Grain-growth

Abstract

A number of technologies rely on the conversion of short laser pulses from one spectral domain to another. Efficient frequency conversion is currently obtained in ordered nonlinear optical materials and requires a periodic spatial modulation of their nonlinear coefficient which results in a narrow bandwidth. One can trade off efficiency for more spectral bandwidth by relaxing the strict phase-matching conditions and achieve nonlinear interaction in carefully engineered disordered crystalline aggregates, in a so-called random quasi-phase-matching (rQPM) process. In this dissertation, we examine appropriate fabrication pathways for (1-x)Pb(Mg1/3Nb2/3)O3-xPbTiO3 (PMN-PT) and ZnSe transparent ceramics for applications in the mid-IR. The main challenge associated with the fabrication of high transparency PMN-PT ceramics is to avoid the parasitic pyrochlore phase. The most effective method to suppress the formation of this undesired phase is to use magnesium niobate (MgNb2O6) as the starting material. We have found that, contrary to commercially available lead oxide powders, nanopowders synthesized in our lab by the combustion method help improve the densification of ceramics and their overall optical quality. The effects of dopants on the microstructure evolution and phase-purity control in PMN-PT ceramics are also investigated and show that La3+ helps control grain-growth and get a pure perovskite phase, thereby improving the samples transparency. With large second order susceptibility coefficients and wide transmission window from 0.45 to 21 μm, polycrystalline zinc selenide is also an ideal candidate material for accessing the MWIR spectrum through rQPM nonlinear interaction. We have investigated non-stoichiometric heat-treatment conditions necessary to develop adequate microstructure for rQPM from commercial CVD-grown ZnSe ceramics. We have been able to demonstrate the world's first optical parametric oscillation (OPO) based on rQPM in ZnSe transparent ceramic, enabling broadband frequency combs spanning 3-7.5 μm.

Notes

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Graduation Date

2019

Semester

Fall

Advisor

Gaume, Romain

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

College

College of Engineering and Computer Science

Department

Materials Science and Engineering

Degree Program

Materials Science and Engineering

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0007748

URL

http://purl.fcla.edu/fcla/etd/CFE0007748

Language

English

Release Date

June 2019

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)

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