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1.
Opt Lett ; 44(23): 5663-5666, 2019 Dec 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31774748

RESUMO

Owing to their intrinsic stability against optical feedback (OF), quantum cascade lasers (QCLs) represent a uniquely versatile source to further improve self-mixing interferometry at mid-infrared and terahertz (THz) frequencies. Here, we show the feasibility of detecting with nanometer precision, the deeply subwavelength ($ \lt \lambda /6000 $<λ/6000) mechanical vibrations of a suspended $ {{\rm Si}_3}{{\rm N}_4} $Si3N4 membrane used as the external element of a THz QCL feedback interferometer. Besides representing an extension of the applicability of vibrometric characterization at THz frequencies, our system can be exploited for the realization of optomechanical applications, such as dynamical switching between different OF regimes and a still-lacking THz master-slave configuration.

2.
Sci Rep ; 8(1): 17648, 2018 Nov 30.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30504784

RESUMO

A correction to this article has been published and is linked from the HTML and PDF versions of this paper. The error has been fixed in the paper.

3.
Opt Lett ; 43(10): 2225-2228, 2018 May 15.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29762559

RESUMO

We demonstrate a gas spectroscopy technique, using self-mixing in a 3.4 terahertz quantum-cascade laser (QCL). All previous QCL spectroscopy techniques have required additional terahertz instrumentation (detectors, mixers, or spectrometers) for system pre-calibration or spectral analysis. By contrast, our system self-calibrates the laser frequency (i.e., with no external instrumentation) to a precision of 630 MHz (0.02%) by analyzing QCL voltage perturbations in response to optical feedback within a 0-800 mm round-trip delay line. We demonstrate methanol spectroscopy by introducing a gas cell into the feedback path and show that a limiting absorption coefficient of ∼1×10-4 cm-1 is resolvable.

4.
Sci Rep ; 7(1): 7236, 2017 08 03.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28775327

RESUMO

The effects of optical feedback (OF) in lasers have been observed since the early days of laser development. While OF can result in undesirable and unpredictable operation in laser systems, it can also cause measurable perturbations to the operating parameters, which can be harnessed for metrological purposes. In this work we exploit this 'self-mixing' effect to infer the emission spectrum of a semiconductor laser using a laser-feedback interferometer, in which the terminal voltage of the laser is used to coherently sample the reinjected field. We demonstrate this approach using a terahertz frequency quantum cascade laser operating in both single- and multiple-longitudinal mode regimes, and are able to resolve spectral features not reliably resolved using traditional Fourier transform spectroscopy. We also investigate quantitatively the frequency perturbation of individual laser modes under OF, and find excellent agreement with predictions of the excess phase equation central to the theory of lasers under OF.

5.
Opt Express ; 24(19): 21948-56, 2016 Sep 19.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27661929

RESUMO

We explain the origin of voltage variations due to self-mixing in a terahertz (THz) frequency quantum cascade laser (QCL) using an extended density matrix (DM) approach. Our DM model allows calculation of both the current-voltage (I-V) and optical power characteristics of the QCL under optical feedback by changing the cavity loss, to which the gain of the active region is clamped. The variation of intra-cavity field strength necessary to achieve gain clamping, and the corresponding change in bias required to maintain a constant current density through the heterostructure is then calculated. Strong enhancement of the self-mixing voltage signal due to non-linearity of the (I-V) characteristics is predicted and confirmed experimentally in an exemplar 2.6 THz bound-to-continuum QCL.

6.
Sensors (Basel) ; 16(3)2016 Mar 09.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27005629

RESUMO

We propose a self-consistent method for the analysis of granular materials at terahertz (THz) frequencies using a quantum cascade laser. The method is designed for signals acquired from a laser feedback interferometer, and applied to non-contact reflection-mode sensing. Our technique is demonstrated using three plastic explosives, achieving good agreement with reference measurements obtained by THz time-domain spectroscopy in transmission geometry. The technique described in this study is readily scalable: replacing a single laser with a small laser array, with individual lasers operating at different frequencies will enable unambiguous identification of select materials. This paves the way towards non-contact, reflection-mode analysis and identification of granular materials at THz frequencies using quantum cascade lasers.

7.
Water Res ; 88: 380-388, 2016 Jan 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26517789

RESUMO

This study used a range of treated water treatment works sludge options for the removal of phosphorus (P) from primary wastewater. These options included the application of ultrafiltration for recovery of the coagulant from the sludge. The treatment performance and whole life cost (WLC) of the various recovered coagulant (RC) configurations have been considered in relation to fresh ferric sulphate (FFS). Pre-treatment of the sludge with acid followed by removal of organic and particulate contaminants using a 2kD ultrafiltration membrane resulted in a reusable coagulant that closely matched the performance FFS. Unacidified RC showed 53% of the phosphorus removal efficiency of FFS, at a dose of 20 mg/L as Fe and a contact time of 90 min. A longer contact time of 8 h improved performance to 85% of FFS. P removal at the shorter contact time improved to 88% relative to FFS by pre-acidifying the sludge to pH 2, using an acid molar ratio of 5.2:1 mol H(+):Fe. Analysis of the removal of P showed that rapid phosphate precipitation accounted for >65% of removal with FFS. However, for the acidified RC a slower adsorption mechanism dominated; this was accelerated at a lower pH. A cost-benefit analysis showed that relative to dosing FFS and disposing waterworks sludge to land, the 20 year WLC was halved by transporting acidified or unacidified sludge up to 80 km for reuse in wastewater treatment. A maximum inter-site distance was determined to be 240 km above the current disposal route at current prices. Further savings could be made if longer contact times were available to allow greater P removal with unacidified RC.


Assuntos
Fósforo/isolamento & purificação , Ultrafiltração/métodos , Eliminação de Resíduos Líquidos/métodos , Análise Custo-Benefício , Compostos Férricos/química , Floculação , Fosfatos/química , Esgotos , Eliminação de Resíduos Líquidos/economia , Purificação da Água/métodos
8.
Water Res ; 88: 502-509, 2016 Jan 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26521220

RESUMO

Coagulant recovery and reuse from waterworks sludge has the potential to significantly reduce waste disposal and chemicals usage for water treatment. Drinking water regulations demand purification of recovered coagulant before they can be safely reused, due to the risk of disinfection by-product precursors being recovered from waterworks sludge alongside coagulant metals. While several full-scale separation technologies have proven effective for coagulant purification, none have matched virgin coagulant treatment performance. This study examines the individual and successive separation performance of several novel and existing ferric coagulant recovery purification technologies to attain virgin coagulant purity levels. The new suggested approach of alkali extraction of dissolved organic compounds (DOC) from waterworks sludge prior to acidic solubilisation of ferric coagulants provided the same 14:1 selectivity ratio (874 mg/L Fe vs. 61 mg/L DOC) to the more established size separation using ultrafiltration (1285 mg/L Fe vs. 91 mg/L DOC). Cation exchange Donnan membranes were also examined: while highly selective (2555 mg/L Fe vs. 29 mg/L DOC, 88:1 selectivity), the low pH of the recovered ferric solution impaired subsequent treatment performance. The application of powdered activated carbon (PAC) to ultrafiltration or alkali pre-treated sludge, dosed at 80 mg/mg DOC, reduced recovered ferric DOC contamination to <1 mg/L but in practice, this option would incur significant costs. The treatment performance of the purified recovered coagulants was compared to that of virgin reagent with reference to key water quality parameters. Several PAC-polished recovered coagulants provided the same or improved DOC and turbidity removal as virgin coagulant, as well as demonstrating the potential to reduce disinfection byproducts and regulated metals to levels comparable to that attained from virgin material.


Assuntos
Água Potável/análise , Compostos Férricos/química , Reciclagem , Purificação da Água/métodos , Qualidade da Água , Diálise , Esgotos/química , Ultrafiltração
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