Optimizing thin film filters for ultrashort pulse shaping
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In this research I develop automated thin film filter design techniques for ultrashort laser pulse shaping applications. Genetic algorithms and simulated annealing techniques are used to search for these optimal filter designs. Both temporal and spectral domain methodologies are explored and, for the case of a double pulse reflection filter, comparisons are made between the two techniques. All filters in this work are constructed from two materials (not including the substrate) and consist of alternate high and low refractive index layers. The optimization algorithms search for an optimum filter design within the constraints of layer thickness, total number of layers, material choice, and computational run time. A double pulse filter, a pulse stretching mirror and a compression filter are some of the examples considered in this work.