Graphite Saturable Absorber for Q-Switched Fiber Laser


  • Yushazlina R. Yuzaile
  • Noor A. Awang
  • Zahariah Zakaria
  • Noor U.H.H Zalkepali
  • Amirah A. Latif
  • Atiqah N. Azmi
  • Fatin S. Abdul Hadi





Graphite, Mechanical Exfoliation, Q-Switching, Q-Switched Fiber Laser, Saturable Absorber


This paper reported a successful demonstration on Q-switched fiber laser by using graphite as saturable absorber (SA). The graphite is deposited on the fiber ferrule through a simple mechanical exfoliation method. The modulation depth of the graphite SA is 19.2% with a saturation intensity of 85 MW/cm². The maximum achievable pulse repetition rates and pulse width are 42.41 kHz and 3.40 μs respectively. Meanwhile, its optical signal-to-noise ratio is about 50.81 dB. The Q-switched pulses have the maximum pulse energy of 5.84 nJ. These outcomes demonstrated that a stable output of passively Q-switched fiber laser is produced and can be applied for various optical fiber applications.


[1] Ahmad H, Awang NA, Paul MC, Pal M, Latif AA & Harun SW (2012), All fiber passively mode locked zirconium-based erbium-doped fiber laser. Optics & Laser Technology 44, 534-537.

[2] Shang L, Ning J & Yang X (2012), An experimental study of an acousto-optic q-switched yb3+-doped all-fiber laser Optik 123, 1061-1062.

[3] Gaponenko MS, Onushchenko AA, Kisel VE, Malyaevich AM, Yumashev KV & Kuleshov NV (2012), Compact passively q-switched diode-pumped tm:ky(wo4)2 laser with 8 ns/30 μJ pulses. Laser Physics Letters 9, 291-294.

[4] Kurkov AS, Sadovnikov YE, Marakulin AV & Sholokhov EM (2010), All fiber er-tm q-switched laser. Laser Physics Letters 7, 795-797.

[5] Seguin F & Oleskevich TK (1993), Diode pumped q-switched fiber laser. Optical Engineering 32, 2036-2041.

[6] Lee GP & Newson TP (1996), Diode pumped high power simultaneously q-switched and self mode-locked erbium doped fiber laser. Electronic Letters, 32, 1685-1686.

[7] Richardson DJ, Nilsson J & Clarkson WA (2010), High power fiber lasers: current status and future perspectives. Journal of Optical Society of America 27, 63-92.

[8] Ahmad H, Hassan SNM, Ahmad F, Zulkifli MZ & Harun SW (2016), Broadband tuning in a passively q switched erbium doped fiber laser (edfl) via multiwall carbon nanotubes / polyvinyl alcohol (mwcnt/pva) saturable absorber. Optics Communications 365, 54-60.

[9] Hakulinen T & Okhotnikov OG (2007), 8 ns fiber laser q switched by the resonant saturable absorber mirror. Optics Letters 32, 2677-2679.

[10] Yamashita S, Inoue Y, Maruyama S, Murakami Y, Yaguchi H, Jablonski M & Set SY (2004), Saturable absorbers incorporating carbon nanotubes directly synthesized onto substrates and fibers and their application to mode-locked fiber lasers. Optics Letters 29, 1581-1583.

[11] Set S Y, Yaguchi H, Tanaka Y & Jablonski M (2004), Laser mode locking using a saturable absorber incorporating carbon nanotubes. Journal of Lightwave Technology 22, 51-56.

[12] Bao Q, Zhang H, Wang Y, Ni Z, Yan Y, Shen ZX, Loh KP & Tang DY (2009), Atomic-layer graphene as a saturable absorber for ultrafast pulsed lasers. Advanced Functional Materials 19, 3077-3083.

[13] Haris H, Harun SW, Muhammad AR, Anyi CL, Tan SJ, Ahmad F, Nor RM, Zulkepely NR & Arof H (2016), Passively q-switched erbium-doped and ytterbium-doped fibre lasers with topological insulator bismuth selenide (Bi2Se3) as saturable absorber. Optics & Laser Technology 88, 121-127.

[14] Yu Z, Song Y, Tian J, Dou Z, Guoyu H, Li K, Li H & Zhang X (2015), High-repetition-rate q-switched fiber laser with high quality topological insulator Bi2Se3 film. Optics Express 22, 11508-11515.

[15] Woodward R, Kelleher E, Howe R, Hu G, Torrisi F, Hasan T, Popov S & Taylor J (2014) Tunable q-switched fiber laser based on saturable edge-state absorption in few- layer molybdenum disulfide (MoS2) Optics Express 22, 31113-311122.

[16] Ahmad H, Suthaskumar M, Tiu ZC, Zarei A & Harun SW (2016), Q-Switched erbium-doped fiber laser using MoSe2 as saturable absorber. Optics & Laser Technology 79, 20-23.

[17] Li L, Wang Y, Fu Z, Wang X & Yang G (2017), High energy er-doped q-switched fiber laser with WS2 saturable absorber Optics Communications 406, 80-84.

[18] Wang X, Luo Z, Liu H, Zhao M, Liu M, Zhu Y, Xue J, Luo A & Xu W (2015), Gold nanorod as saturable absorber for q-switched yb-doped fiber laser. Optics Communications 346, 21-25.

[19] Ahmad H, Ruslan NE, Ali ZA, Reduan SA, Lee CSJ, Shaharuddin RA, Nayan N & Ismail MA (2016), Ag-nanoparticle as a q switched device for tunable c-band fiber laser. Optics Communications 381, 85-90.

[20] Xu J-L, Li X-L, Wu Y-Z, Hao X-P, He J-L & Yang K-J (2011), Graphene saturable absorber mirror for ultra-fast-pulse solid-state laser. Optics Letters 36, 1948-1950.

[21] Gao C, Wang R, Zhu L, Gao M, Wang Q, Zhang Z, Wei Z, Lin J & Guo L (2012), Resonantly pumped 1.645 μm high repetition rate Er:YAG laser Q-switched by a graphene as a saturable absorber. Optics Letters 37, 632-634.

[22] Lagatsky AA, Sun Z, Kulmala TS, Sundaram RS, Milana S, Torrisi F, Antipov OL, Lee Y, Ahn JH, Brown CTA, Sibbett W & Ferrari AC (2013), 2 μm solid-state laser mode-locked by single-layer graphene. Applied Physics Letters 102, 013113.

[23] Liu J, Wu S, Yang Q-H & Wang P (2011), Stable nanosecond pulse generation from a graphene-based passively q-switched yb-doped fiber laser. Optics Letters 36, 4008-40010.

[24] Sobon G, Sotor J, Pasternak I, Grodecki K, Paletko P, Strupinski W, Jankiewicz Z & Abramski KM (2012), Er-doped fiber laser mode-locked by CVD-graphene saturable absorber. Journal of Lightwave Technology 30, 2770-2775.

[25] Zhang M, Kelleher EJR, Torrisi F, Sun Z, Hasan T, Popa D, Wang F, Ferrari AC, Popov SV & Taylor JR (2012), Tm-doped fiber laser mode-locked by graphene-polymer composite. Optics Express 20, 25077-25084.

[26] Sutter PW, Flege JI & Sutter EA (2008), Epitaxial graphene on ruthenium. Nature Materials 7, 406-411.

[27] Wang K, Tai G, Wong KH, Lau SP & Guo W (2011), Ni induced few layer graphene growth at low temperature by pulsed laser deposition. AIP Advances 1, 022141.

[28] Stankovich S, Dikin DA, Piner RD, Kohllhaas KA, Kleinhammes A, Jia Y, Wu Y, Nguyen ST & Ruoff RS (2007), Synthesis of graphene-based nanosheets via chemical reduction of exfoliated graphite oxide. Carbon 45, 1558-1565.

[29] Li X, Wang X, Zhang L, Lee S & Dai H (2008), Chemically derived, ultrasmooth graphene nanoribbon semiconductors. Science 319, 1229-1232.

[30] Liu N, Luo F, Wu H, Liu Y, Zhang C & Chen J (2008), One-step ionic liquid-assisted electrochemical synthesis of ionic-liquid-functionalized graphene sheets directly from graphite. Advanced Functional Materials 18, 1518-25.

[31] Lin GR & Lin YC (2011), Directly exfoliated and imprinted graphite nano-particle saturable absorber for passive mode-locking erbium doped fiber laser. Laser Physics Letters 8, 880-86.

[32] Lin YH & Lin GR (2012), Free-standing nano-scale graphite saturable absorber for passively mode-locked erbium doped fiber ring laser. Laser Physics Letters 9, 398-404.

[33] Lee J, Lee J, Koo J & Ju HL (2016), Graphite saturable absorber based on the pencil-sketching method for Q-switching of an erbium fiber laser. Applied Optics 55, 303-309.

[34] Yang C-Y, Wu C-L, Lin Y-H, Tsai L-H, Chi Y-C, Chang J-H, Wu C-I, Tsai H-K, Tsai D-P & Lin G-R (2013), Fabricating graphite nano-sheet powder by slow electrochemical exfoliation of large-scale graphite foil as a mode-locker for fiber lasers. Optical Materials Express 3, 1893-1905.

[35] Lin Y-H, Yang C-Y, Lin S-F & Lin G-R (2015), Triturating versatile carbon materials as saturable absorptive nano powders for ultrafast pulsating of erbium-doped fiber lasers. Optical Materials Express 5, 236-253.

[36] Bonaccorso F, Sun Z, Hasan T & Ferrari AC (2010), Graphene photonics and optoelectronics. Nature Photonics 4, 611-622.

[37] Liu Z-B, He X & Wang DN (2011), Passively mode-locked fiber laser based on a hollow-core photonic crystal fiber filled with few-layered graphene oxide solution. Optics Letters 36, 3024-3026.

[38] Xu J, Liu J, Wu S, Yang Q-H & Wang P (2012), Graphene oxide mode-locked femtosecond erbium-doped fiber lasers. Optics Express 20, 15474–15480.

[39] Jung M, Koo J, Park J, Song Y-W, Jhon YM, Lee K, Lee S & Lee JH (2013), Mode-locked pulse generation from an all-fiberized, Tm-Ho-codoped fiber laser incorporating a graphene oxide-deposited side-polished fiber. Optics Express 21, 20062-20072.

[40] Lee J, Koo J, Debnath P, Song Y-W & Lee JH (2013), A q-switched, mode-locked fiber laser using a graphene oxide-based polarization sensitive saturable absorber. Laser Physics Letters 10, 035103.

[41] Kobtsev S, Kukarin S & Fedotov Y (2008), Ultra-low repetition rate mode-locked fiber laser with high-energy pulses. Optics Express 16, 21936-21941.

[42] Ahmad H, Soltanian MRK, Narimani L, Amiri IS, Khodaei A & Harun SW (2015), Tunable s-band q-switched fiber laser using Bi2Se3 as the saturable absorber. IEEE Photonics Journal 7, 1502508.

View Full Article: