VECSEL systems for the generation and manipulation of trapped magnesium ions

S. C. Burd, D. T. C. Allcock, T. Leinonen, J. P. Penttinen, D. H. Slichter, R. Srinivas, A. C. Wilson, R. Jördens, M. Guina, D. Leibfried, and D. J. Wineland, Optica 3, 1294-1299 (2016)


Experiments in atomic, molecular, and optical (AMO) physics rely on lasers at many different wavelengths and with varying requirements on the spectral linewidth, power, and intensity stability. Vertical external-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VECSELs), when combined with nonlinear frequency conversion, can potentially replace many of the laser systems currently in use. Here, we present and characterize VECSEL systems that can perform all laser-based tasks for quantum information processing experiments with trapped magnesium ions. For the photoionization of neutral magnesium, 570.6 nm light is generated with an intracavity frequency-doubled VECSEL containing a lithium triborate crystal. External frequency doubling produces 285.3 nm light for a resonant interaction with the ?01?11 transition of neutral Mg. Using an externally frequency-quadrupled VECSEL, we implement Doppler cooling of Mg25+ on the 279.6 nm ?1/22?3/22 cycling transition, repumping on the 280.4 nm ?1/22?1/22 transition, coherent state manipulation, and resolved sideband cooling close to the motional ground state. Our systems serve as prototypes for applications in AMO requiring single-frequency, power-scalable laser sources at multiple wavelengths.