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Fibre lasers for photo-acoustic gas spectroscopy

Stewart, George and Arsad, Norhana (2011) Fibre lasers for photo-acoustic gas spectroscopy. In: 21st International Conference on Optical Fibre Sensors, 2011-05-15 - 2011-05-19.

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We report here on the use of fiber lasers for recovery of gas absorption line shapes by photo-acoustic spectroscopy. We demonstrate the principle of operation using an erbium-doped fiber, stabilized using a length of un-pumped doped fibre as a saturable absorber. Intensity modulation of the laser output for phase sensitive detection is performed by modulation of the pump current while the wavelength is scanned through the absorption line by a PZT on a fibre Bragg grating. This avoids the distortions that arise in recovered signals due to simultaneous wavelength and intensity modulation, as is the case with conventional DFB diode lasers. Furthermore, the near zero off-line signals with photo-acoustic spectroscopy means that high modulation indices can be used with simple intensity modulation of the fiber laser output. The modulation frequency is set to the acoustic resonance frequency of the gas cell and measurements are made on the P17 absorption line of acetylene at 1535.39nm showing good agreement with the theoretical line-shape profile.