Ultrafast spectroscopy of voltage reconfigurable graphene saturable absorbers in the visible and near infrared
We describe a detailed experimental investigation of the ultrafast nonlinear response of a voltagecontrolled graphene-gold saturable absorber (VCG-gold-SA) by employing femtosecond pump probe spectroscopy. Visible and near-infrared continuum probe pulses covering the spectral range from 500nm to 1600nm were used. In the experiments, the saturation fluence, modulation depth, ultrafast relaxation times, and the saturable absorption bandwidth of the VCG-gold-SA were measured as a function of the applied bias. We observed both saturable absorption and multi-photon absorption regimes as the applied bias voltage was varied between 0 and 2 V. Measurements indicate that under bias voltages in the range of 0–2 V, it should be possible to adjust the insertion loss of the VCG-gold-SA and at the same time, maintain a sufficient amount of modulation depth as well as an attainable level of saturation fluence over an ultrabroad spectral bandwidth. In particular, at the bias voltage of 1 V, the VCG-gold-SA exhibited fast saturable absorber behavior with adjustable insertion loss from 630nm to 1100nm. These results clearly demonstrate that the VCG-gold-SA can operate as a versatile mode locker for femtosecond pulse generation from lasers operating in the visible and near-infrared wavelengths.