On Friday, I grabbed the Zurich Instruments HF2LI lock-in amplifier and brought it home. As time permits, I will work towards developing a similar readout script as we have for the SR785.
Shruti picked it up @4pm.
I gave one Noliac PZT from the two spare in the metal PMC kit to Paco. There is one spare left in the kit.
I borrowed the little red cart 🛒 to help clear the path for new optical tables in B252 West Bridge. Will return once I am done with it.
I returned the Zurich Instruments analyzer I borrowed some time ago to test out at home. It is sitting on first table across from Steve's old desk.
One of the main draw backs of the measurement was the polarisation was not aligned properly in the setup. So, then the next step was to identify the polarisation at different locations in the beam path and to maximise the polarisation to either S or P component.
So, we introduced HWP at the input beam path after isolator as shown in attachment #1. Also, the polarisation was tested at positions P1, P2, P3, and P4 shown in attachment #1 by placing a polarisation beam splitter at these locations and then by observing the transmitted (P component) and reflected light (S component) using power meter.
The observations at different locations are as the follows
These observations show that the P and S components are almost equal, and this is not a good polarisation arrangement. At this point, we also had to check whether the incoming beam is linearly polarised or not.
To test the same, the PBS was placed at position P1 and the P and S components were observed with power meter as the HWP is rotated.Attachment # 2 shows the results of the same, that is the variation in P and S component as the HWP is rotated.
This result clearly shows that the input beam is linearly polarised. The HWP was then adjusted such that the P component is maximum and coupled to the MZI. With this orientation of HWP, the polarisation observed at different positions P1, P2, P3, and P4 are as follows.
This shows that the polarisation is linearly polarised as well as it is oriented along the P direction (parallel to the optical table).
We have the polarisation maintaining fiber (PM 980) as the delay fiber. The polarisation of the light as it propagates through a PM fiber depends on how well the input beam is coupled to the axis (slow or fast) of the fiber. So, the next task was to couple the light to one of the axes of the fiber.
The alignment key on the fiber is a good indication of the axis of the fiber. In our case, the alignment key lines up with the slow axis of the fiber. We decided to couple the light to the fast axis of the fiber. Since the incoming beam is P polarised, the output fiber coupler was aligned such that the fast axis is parallel to optical table as possible.
A PBS was then introduced after the fiber output collimator . There is a HWP (marked as HWP2 in attachment 1) in front of the input coupler of the fiber as well. This HWP was then rotated and observed the P and S component from the PBS that is now placed after the output coupler with a power meter.The idea was , when the light is coupled to the fast axis of the fiber, we will see the maximum at the P componet at the output
Attachment # 3 shows the observation.
In this way I tried to find the orientation of the HWP2 such that the P component is maximum at the output. But I was not succeeded in this method and observed that the output was fluctuating when the fiber was disturbed. One doubt we had was whether the fiber is PM or not . Thus we checked the fiber end with fiber microscope and confirmed that it is PM fiber.
Thus, we modifed the setup as shown in attachement # 4.The photodetector (PDA55) was monitoring the S component and the output of the detector was observed on an oscilloscope. We rotated the HWP2 such that the S component is almost minimum. At the same time, we were disturbing the fiber and was observing whether the output is fluctuating. The HWP2 angle was tweaked around the minimum of S component and observed the output with disturbing the fiber. This way we found the orientation of HWP2 such that the light is coupled to the fast axis of the fiber and the output was not fluctuating while we disturb the fiber. We tested it by heating the fiber with a heat gun as well and confirmed that the output is not fluctuating and thus the light is coupled to the fast axis of the fiber.
The alignement was disturbed after the replcement of the beam splitter. We tried to get the alignment back . But we are not succeeded yet in getting good interfernce pattern. This is mainly because of poor mode matching of two beams. We will also try with the spooled fiber.
just main points, anajli is going to fill out the details.
To rule out mode-matching as the reason for non-ideal output from the MZ, I suggested using the setup I have on the NW side of the PSL enclosure for the measurement. This uses two identical fiber collimators, and the distance between collimator and recombination BS is approximately the same, so the spatial modes should be pretty well matched.
The spooled fiber we found was not suitable for use as it had a wide key connector and I couldn't find any wide-key FC/PC to narrow-key FC/APC adaptors. So we decided to give the fiber going to the Y end and back (~90m estimated length) a shot. We connected the two fibers at the EY table using a fiber mating sleeve (so the fiber usually bringing the IR pickoff from EY to the PSL table was disconnected from its collimator).
In summary, we cannot explain why the contrast of the MZ is <5%. Spatial mode-overlap is definitely not to blame. Power asymmetry in the two arms of the MZ is one possible explanation, could also be unstable polarization, even though we think the entire fiber chain is PM. Anjali is investigating.
We saw today that the Thorlabs PM beam splitters (borrowed from Andrew until our AFW components arrive) do not treat the two special axes (fast and slow) of the fiber on equal footing. When we coupled light into the fast axis, we saw huge asymmetry between the two split arms of the beamsplitter (3:1 ratio in power instead of the expected 1:1 for a 50/50 BS). Looking at the patch cord with an IR viewer, we also saw light leaking through the core along it. Turns out this part is meant to be used with light coupled to the slow axis only.
At some point I'd like to reclaim this setup for ALS, but meantime, Anjali can work on characterization/noise budgeting. Since we have some CDS signals, we can even think of temperature control of the NPRO using pythonPID to keep the fringe in the linear regime for an extended period of time.
If I understand correctly, the Mach-Zehnder readout port power is only a function of the differential phase accumulated between the two interfering light beams. In the homodyne setup, this phase difference can come about because of either fiber length change OR laser frequency change. We cannot directly separate the two effects. Can you help me understand what advantage, if any, the heterodyne setup offers in this regard? Or is the point of going to heterodyne mainly for the feedback control, as there is presumably some easy way to combine the I and Q outputs of the heterodyne measurement to always produce an error signal that is a linear function of the differential phase, as opposed to the sin^2 in the free-running homodyne setup? What is the scheme for doing this operation in a high bandwidth way (i.e. what is supposed to happen to the demodulated outputs in Attachment #3 of your elog)? What is the advantage of the heterodyne scheme over applying temperature feedback to the NPRO with 0.5 Hz tracking bandwidth so that we always stay in the linear regime of the homodyne readout?
Also, what is the functional form of the curve labelled "Theory" in Attachment #2? How did you convert from voltage units in Attachment #1 to frequency units in Attachment #2? Does it make sense that you're apparently measuring laser frequency noise above 10 Hz? i.e. where do the "Dark Current Noise" and "Shot Noise" traces for the experiment lie relative to the blue curve in Attachment #2? Can you point to where the data is stored, and also add a photo of the setup?
My understanding is that the main advantage in going to the heterodyne scheme is that we can extract the frequecy noise information without worrying about locking to the linear region of MZI. Arctan of the ratio of the inphase and quadrature component will give us phase as a function of time, with a frequency offset. We need to to correct for this frequency offset. Then the frequency noise can be deduced. But still the frequency noise value extracted would have the contribution from both the frequency noise of the laser as well as from fiber length fluctuation. I have not understood the method of giving temperature feedback to the NPRO.I would like to discuss the same.
The functional form used for the curve labeled as theory is 5x104/f. The power spectral density (V2/Hz) of the the data in attachment #1 is found using the pwelch function in Matlab and square root of the same gives y axis in V/rtHz. From the experimental data, we get the value of Vmax and Vmin. To ride from Vmax to Vmin , the corrsponding phase change is pi. From this information, V/rad can be calculated. This value is then multiplied with 2*pi*time dealy to get the quantity in V/Hz. Dividing V/rtHz value with V/Hz value gives y axis in Hz/rtHz. The calculated value of shot noise and dark current noise are way below (of the order of 10-4 Hz/rtHz) in this frequency range.
I forgor to take the picture of the setup at that time. Now Andrew has taken the fiber beam splitter back for his experiment. Attachment #1 shows the current view of the setup. The data from the previous trial is saved in /users/anjali/MZ/MZdata_20190417.hdf5
From the earlier results with homodyne measurement,the Vmax and Vmin values observed were comparable with the expected results . So in the time interval between these two points, the MZI is assumed to be in the linear region and I tried to find the frequency noise based on data available in this region.This results is not significantly different from that we got before when we took the complete time series to calculate the frequency noise. Attachment #1 shows the time domain data considered and attachment #2 shows the frequecy noise extracted from that.
As discussed, we will be trying the heterodyne method next. Initialy, we will be trying to save the data with two channel ADC with 16 kHz sampling rate. With this setup, we can get the information only upto 8 kHz.
We repeated the homodyne measurement to check whether we are measuring the actual frequency noise of the laser. The idea was to repeat the experiment when the laser is not locked and when the laser is locked to IMC.The frequency noise of the laser is expected to be reduced at higher frequency (the expected value is about 0.1 Hz/rtHz at 100 Hz ) when it is locked to IMC . In this measurement, the fiber beam splitter used is Non PM. Following are the observations
1. Time domain output_laser unlocked.pdf : Time domain output when the laser is not locked. The frequency noise is estimated from data corresponds to the linear regime. Following time intervals are considered to calculate the frequency noise (a) 104-116 s (b) 164-167 s (c) 285-289 s
2. Frequency_noise_laser_unlocked.pdf: Frequency noise when the laser is not locked. The model used has the functional form of 5x104/f as we did before. Compared to our previous results, the closeness of the experimental results to the model is less from this measurement. In both the cases, we have the uncertainty because of the fiber length fluctuation. Moreover, this measurement could have effect of polarisation fluctuation as well.
3.Time domain output_laser locked.pdf :Time domain output when the laser is locked. Following time intervals are considered to calculate the frequency noise (a) 70-73 s (b) 142-145 s (c) 266-269 s.
4. Frequency_noise_laser_locked.pdf : Frequency noise when the laser is locked
5. Frequency noise_comparison.pdf : Comparison of frequency noise in two cases. The two values are not significantly different above 10 Hz. We would expect reduction in frequency noise at higher frequency once the laser is locked to IMC. But this result may indicate that we are not really measuring the actual frequency noise of the laser.