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Alberto Di Lieto

Raffaele Faoro

Daniela Parisi

Alessandra Toncelli

Mauro Tonelli

Stefano Veronesi -


The Laboratory 'New Materials for laser applications' is part of Istituto Nanoscienze – CNR. It is placed at the Physics Department 'E. Fermi' of the University of Pisa. The main research activities consist in the Czochralski growth of fluoride and oxide crystals, doped with rare earth trivalent ions, and in their spectroscopic characterization. These activities can be summarized in 4 main topics:


Czochralski crystal growth;

The facility consists of two Czochralski furnaces (Fig.1) both operating in controlled Ar atmosphere at temperatures up to 1100C. All the growth process, including the diameter of the growing crystal, is computer-controlled and the samples obtained are of excellent optical quality. The samples can be oriented, cut and polished up to laser grade. They have been used as active media in solid state lasers operating in the near-infrared wavelength region at room temperature.


μ-pulling down crystalline fibers growth;

The method allows growing crystals in shape of fibers (Fig.2), rods or ribbons with diameters in the range 0.15 mm to 5 mm. The μ-PD crystals growth produces high quality laser grade samples. Moreover, precise control of the temperature and the crystal shape is easy in μ-PD system. In our lab, we grew different single crystal fibers belonging to fluorides (LiF, BaY2F8) or oxides (LiNbO3 YAG, LuAG, YAP) RE3+ doped, and pure elements (Si) for non-linear optics, laser, scintillation applications and for low thermal noise suspension in advanced gravitational wave detectors (GW).



Our group has long been working on insulating-crystal spectroscopy to evaluate the laser performances of the crystal samples. We focused our attention on the spectroscopy of oxide and fluoride samples, so in our laboratories we set-up a specially equipped apparatus in order to perform absorption and emission spectra, excitation spectra and dynamical analysis of the fluorescence to calculate the absorption and emission cross sections and determine the most probable laser transitions. The steady state and dynamical measurements can be made as a function of the temperature between 10 and 300 K.


Crystalline nanopowders

This facility has been acquired very recently and allow us to obtain crystalline nanopowders (Fig.3) with a size in the range 10-100nm. The starting crystal belongs usually to the fluoride hosts that we grow in our facilities. These nanocrystals, properly doped, can be used for lasers, imaging or biological applications.







Fig 1: Czochralski furnace



Fig 2: Fiber crystal during the growth in a μ_PD furnace



Fig 3: TEM image of BYF nanocrystals the scale bar correspond to 100 nm . The average size is around 20 nm






Multi-wavelength diode-pumped Nd:LGGG picosecond laser

A. Agnesi, F. Pirzio, G. Reali, A. Arcangeli, M. Tonelli, Z. Jia, X. Tao

Applied Physics B, 99 135, (2010)



Efficient in-band pumped Ho:LuLiF4 2-micron laser

J. W. Kim, J. I. Mackenzie, D. Parisi, S. Veronesi, M. Tonelli, and W. A. Clarkson

Opt. Lett.,35 420-422 (2010)



Laser cooling of solids to cryogenic temperatures

D. V. Seletskiy, Seth D. Melgaard, S. Bigotta, A. Di Lieto, M. Tonelli, M. Sheik-Bahae

Nature Photonics, 4 161-164 (2010) doi:10.1038/nphoton.2009.269 Letter



CW and femtosecond operation of a diode-pumped Yb:BaY2F8 laser

G. Galzerano, N. Coluccelli, D. Gatti, A. Di Lieto, M. Tonelli, P. Laporta

Opt. Express, 18 6255-6261 (2010)



Structural effects on the emission properties of Pr3+-doped Ba 2NaNb5O15 crystals

E. Cavalli, G. Calestani, F. Mezzadri, R. Faoro, M. Tonelli, and P. Boutinaud

Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics, 43 455404 (2010)



Effect of Ce co-doping on KY3F10:Pr crystals

S. Veronesi, D. Parisi and M. Tonelli

Solids, 71 913-917 (2010)



Spectroscopic analysis of Nd3+ doped (Lux+Gd1-x)3Ga5O12 crystal

Z. Jia, X. Tao, J. Zhang, C. Dong, M. Jiang, A. Arcangeli, M. Tonelli

Appl. Phys. B, 100 485 (2010)



Multi-wavelength Nd:GAGG picosecond laser

A. Agnesi, F. Pirzio, G. Reali, A. Arcangeli, M. Tonelli, Z. Jia, X. Tao

Optical Materials, 32 1130 (2010)



Picosecond Nd:BaY2F8 laser discretely tunable around 1 μm

A. Agnesi F. Pirzio G. Reali A. Toncelli M. Tonelli

Appl Phys B, 100 759-764 (2010), doi: 10.1007/s00340-010-4032-8



Diode-pumped Nd:BaY2F8 picosecond laser mode-locked with carbon nanotube saturable absorbers

A. Agnesi, L. Carrà, F. Pirzio, G. Reali, A. Toncelli, M. Tonelli, S. Y. Choi, F. Rotermund, U. Griebner, and V. Petrov

J. Opt. Soc. Am. B, 27 2739-2742 (2010)



Multiwavelength picosecond pulse generation with diode-pumped Nd:GAGG and Nd:LGGG lasers

Agnesi A., Pirzio F., Reali G., Arcangeli A., Tonelli M., Jia Z., Tao X

Proc. SPIE, 7721, 77210d (2010)



Spectroscopic analysis of Nd3+:Gd3AlxGa(5-x)O12 garnet crystal

A.Arcangeli, S. Bigotta, M. Tonelli, J. Zhitai, J. Zhang, X. Tao

Submitted to Journal of the Optical Society of America B (Dec. 2010)



Effect of polarized excitation on the 3PJ manifolds in KYF4:Pr single crystal

D. Parisi, S. Veronesi, M. Tonelli

submitted to Optical Materials

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