Record efficiency of a holmium doped silica fibre laser

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Holmium fibre based devices enable the operation of fibre sources in the wavelength region 2.05-2.15 µm. In particular, the spectral region beyond 2.1 µm exhibits excellent atmospheric transmission. These properties make holmium based sources ideal candidates for a number of mid-IR frequency-conversion, remote sensing and defence applications. Rare earth doped optical fibres have been demonstrated to produce highly efficient lasers and amplifiers. The combination of high purity host materials and low propagation losses, coupled with efficient pump absorption and excellent signal-pump overlap in the core has resulted in near quantum limited efficiencies being demonstrated.