Petaluma, Calif. – Raydiance Inc. has been awarded three competitive government contracts totaling $1.75 million to develop technologies with the express goal of delivering high power fiber ultrafast laser capabilities not available today.
The contracts, awarded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the U.S. Navy, focus on three critical areas: novel optical amplification techniques, pulse compressor technology, and advanced optical fibers.
The NSF grant is a $500,000, Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) award to develop new methods for amplifying ultrafast laser pulses without the distortion effects that currently limit amplification levels. A Navy Phase II.5 Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) award focuses efforts on compressor technology – the final stage of ultrafast laser pulse generation when the pulses are compressed in time to create exceptionally high peak power pulses.
The third award, also from the Navy, is a $750,000 Phase II.5 SBIR project to develop advanced optical fibers – termed higher order mode (HOM) fibers – capable of amplifying ultrafast pulses. Collectively, the successful results of these projects will provide a viable path to ultrafast performance levels that are an order of magnitude greater than what is currently considered state of the art.
“With the explosion of commercial applications for fiber ultrafast lasers, our customers are demanding still higher energy pulses and output power, factors that will further expand opportunities for this technology,” said Scott Davison, president of Raydiance. “We are delighted to be leading the effort to push the boundaries of what’s possible with this unique form of light.”