Simplified interferometric method for the characterization of ultrashort optical pulses

Lead Research Organisation: University of Oxford
Department Name: Oxford Physics


We propose to develop a prototype instrument for measuring the electric field of ultrafast optical pulses. This technology has applications in telecommunications, biological imaging, molecular mass spectrometry and TeraHertz radiation sensing as well as in many branches of scientific research. The instrument uses both a novel means for coding phase information about the pulse into a signal that can be measured with detectors of much slower response time than the pulses whose duration is sought (typically in the femtosecond (10.15 sec) regime), and a new method for processing the data to extract the pulse shape. The instrument will have enhanced capabilities compared to those currently on the market in terms of the amount of information provided, size, sensitivity, operating parameter range, rapidity of update and robustness to noise.Duration of Project (months)
Title Ultra-short optical pulse measurement using a thick nonlinear crystal, 
Description A license to use the patent for this instrument has been negotiated between APE GmbH, a German company, and ISIS Innovation, the intellectual property company of the University of Oxford. APE have built a prototype device which was displayed at the CLEO and Messe Munich laser shows in 2007. 
IP Reference U.S. Patent 7599067, EU Patent 6743921.6 
Protection Patent granted
Year Protection Granted 2009
Licensed Yes
Impact Instrument is used in many research laboratories around the world, and by at least one major laser company in its production and field testing of its products.