High speed, high power one-dimensional beam steering from a 6-element optical phased array


Beam steering at high speed and high power is demonstrated from a 6-element optical phased array using coherent beam combining (CBC) techniques. The steering speed, defined as the inverse of the time to required to sweep the beam across the steering range, is 40 MHz and the total power is 396 mW. The measured central lobe FWHM width is 565 $μ$rad. High on-axis intensity is maintained periodically by phase-locking the array via a stochastic-parallel-gradient-descent (SPGD) algorithm. A master-oscillator-power-amplifier (MOPA) configuration is used where the amplifier array elements are semiconductor slab-coupled-optical-waveguide-amplifiers (SCOWAs). The beam steering is achieved by LiNbO3 phase modulators; the phase-locking occurs by current adjustment of the SCOWAs. The system can be readily scaled to GHz steering speed and multiwatt-class output.

Optics Express