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PoC grant

A team directly involving Sphere Ultrafast Photonics has been awarded a Proof of Concept (PoC) Grant from the European Research Council. The research in attosecond science performed by our partner group in Lund University, Sweden, supported by the ERC advanced grant ALMA “Attosecond Control of Light and Matter”, has led us to develop a simple technique to fully characterize and control ultrashort laser electric fields. The characterization and subsequent control can be divided into two parts: i) Measurement of the spectral phase of short light pulses by measuring second-harmonic generation as a function of dispersion introduced by e.g. a pair of glass wedges (the d-scan technique). From the “dispersion scans”, the spectral phase of the pulse can be retrieved and then adjusted to perform compression of the laser pulses. ii) Ultrafast measurement of the Carrier Envelope Phase offset of amplified laser pulses (Ultrafast-CEP technique). It is based upon interferometry, where the second-harmonic of the red edge of an octave-spanning spectrum is spectrally interfered with the blue edge. In our implementation, the detector is a linear photodiode array and Field-Programmable Gate Array based electronics enables us to determine the CEP at a rate of up to 100 kHz. The d-scan technique was invented in 2011 as a collaborative project between the University of Porto and Lund University. An international patent application was filed on 11 October 2011 and published on 18 April 2013. The Ultrafast-CEP technique was invented in Lund in 2010 and nicely complements the d-scan technique. Through this grant we will build and market a device for characterization and control of femtosecond pulses by combining both techniques. This device will be useful for the ultrafast laser community, which includes university laboratories and research institutes in physics, chemistry, biology and medicine as well as biomedical and materials science industry.

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