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Autonomous frequency stabilization of two extended-cavity diode lasers at the potassium wavelength on a sounding rocket

A.N. Dinkelaker1, M. Schiemangk1, V. Schkolnik1, A. Kenyon1, K. Lampmann2, A. Wenzlawski2, P. Windpassinger2, O. Hellmig3, T. Wendrich4, E.M. Rasel4, M. Giunta5,6, C. Deutsch5, C. Kürbis7, R. Smol7, A. Wicht1,7, M. Krutzik1, and A. Peters1,7

Published in:

Appl. Opt., vol. 56, no. 5, pp. 1388-1396 (2017).


We have developed, assembled, and flight-proven a stable, compact, and autonomous extended-cavity diode laser (ECDL) system designed for atomic physics experiments in space. To that end, two microintegrated ECDLs at 766.7 nm were frequency stabilized during a sounding rocket flight by means of frequency modulation spectroscopy of 39K and offset locking techniques based on the beat note of the two ECDLs. The frequency stabilization as well as additional hardware and software to test hot redundancy mechanisms were implemented as part of a state machine, which controlled the experiment completely autonomously throughout the entire flight mission.

1 Institut für Physik, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, 12489 Berlin, Germany
2 Institut für Physik, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz, 55128 Mainz, Germany
3 Institut für Laserphysik, Universität Hamburg, 22761 Hamburg, Germany
4 Institut für Quantenoptik, Leibniz Universität Hannover, 30167 Hannover, Germany
5 Menlo Systems GmbH, 82152 Martinsried, Germany
6 Max Planck Institut für Quantenoptik, 85748 Garching, Germany
7 Ferdinand-Braun-Institut, Leibniz-Institut für Höchstfrequenztechnik, 12489 Berlin, Germany

OCIS codes:

(140.3425) Laser stabilization; (120.0120) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology; (140.2020) Diode lasers; (300.6210) Spectroscopy, atomic.

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