We present an all-optical technique for measuring single-shot optical pulse phenomena using a feed-forward pulse replicator and a compact, nonlinear loop mirror called the terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexer (TOAD). By exploiting the fast nonlinearity of a semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA) placed asymmetrically within the loop, a sampling window on the order of a few picoseconds can be used to detect features in low-energy (<pJ) optical waveforms. We successfully demonstrate a sampling system with 10-ps resolution capable of sampling single-shot optical waveforms up to 160 ps in duration. The sampled real-time pulsewidth agrees well with standard, long-range space autocorrelation.
- low-energy optical waveforms
- semiconductor optical amplifier
- terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexer
- ultrafast optical waveforms
- feed-forward pulse replicator