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Superluminescent Diode (SLD) Light Sources for OCT Systems


  • SLDs Optimized for Use in OCT Systems
  • 830 or 1325 nm Center Wavelength
  • Fiber-Coupled Power ≥10 mW
  • SM Fiber Pigtail with FC/APC Connector

SLD1325

1325 nm SLD, >100 nm Bandwidth

An Image of the Anterior of the Eye Taken with the SLD830S-A10 in a Modified Ganymede ll OCT System

SLD830S-A10

830 nm SLD, Gain Ripple ≤0.15 dB

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SLD for OCT
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The SLD1325 Superluminescent Diode Mounted in a CLD1015 Compact Laser Diode Driver with TEC

Features

  • Optimized for Use in Spectral Domain OCT Systems
  • 830 nm Center Wavelength SLDs
    • Extremely Low Typical Gain Ripple of 0.03 dB (RMS)
    • Available with 13 mW or 22 mW Typical Fiber-Coupled Power
    • 20 nm Typical 3 dB Bandwidth
    • 50 nm Typical 20 dB Bandwidth
  • 1325 nm Center Wavelength SLD
    • Wide Bandwidth of >100 nm for Improved Resolution in Spectral Domain OCT Systems
    • Integrated Optical Isolator for Enhanced Output Stability
  • Smooth, Near-Gaussian Spectra
  • FC/APC-Terminated Fiber Pigtail Minimizes Optical Feedback
  • Integrated TEC and Thermistor for Temperature Control
  • Hermetically Sealed 14-Pin Butterfly Package

Superluminescent Diodes (SLDs) are the light source of choice in Spectral Domain Optical Coherence Tomography (SD-OCT) imaging. The broad spectrum and short coherence length of the emitted light improves the depth resolution in OCT images. Thorlabs offers SLDs designed for OCT applications with center wavelengths of 830 nm or 1325 nm. Each SLD is shipped with an individualized product data sheet, which includes information on the spectrum and operating parameters of the device. Raw test data for each SLD is also available upon request; please contact Tech Support with inquiries.

Thorlabs' 830 nm SLDs have a center wavelength of 830 nm, a typical 3 dB bandwidth of 20 nm, near-Gaussian spectrum, and extremely low gain ripple, which are important features for producing high-quality OCT images at this wavelength. Two versions are available; the SLD830S-A10 has a typical fiber-coupled power output of 13 mW, while the SLD830S-A20 has a typical fiber-coupled power output of 22 mW. The ripple is guaranteed to be no larger than 0.15 dB (RMS), with a typical value of 0.03 dB.

The SLD1325 has a center wavelength of 1325 nm. It was designed with a broad bandwidth of >100 nm, which supports improved depth resolution in SD-OCT systems. For additional information about the relationship between the OCT system resolution and SLD bandwidth, see the Resolution SD-OCT tab. This SLD is packaged with an integrated TEC and thermistor for temperature control, as well as an optical isolator for enhanced optical stability.

Thorlabs is able to provide low-ripple SLDs with custom wavelengths or higher power diodes. Please note that the engineering design and wafer manufacturing costs involved make the purchase of low quantities very costly. For a quote on custom SLDs, please contact Tech Support.

Operation Guidelines
We strongly recommend adherence to the operating conditions marked on each package. While optimal performance is achieved by utilizing the recommended settings, we recognize users can adjust the spectral characteristics of the SLD by deviating from these recommended settings. For instance, operating at lower temperatures will cause a shift of the central wavelength to shorter wavelengths. It is imperative, however, that as the temperature is reduced, the injection current is also reduced so as not to exceed the recommended output power, if one is noted on the package.

These SLDs should be operated in a constant current, constant temperature mode, which is relatively simple with the proper SLD mount and drivers. To mount and drive these SLDs, Thorlabs recommends using the CLD1015 Compact Laser Diode Driver.

As with most active semiconductor devices, standard anti-static handling procedures must be adhered to in order to prevent an electrical discharge that could destroy the device.

In addition to the butterfly-packaged SLDs available below, Thorlabs offers an extended broadband SLD light source for OCT applications.

SLD Specifications

Note, these specifications are given as guidelines. The characterization sheet shipped with each SLD provides the min, max, and recommended operating parameters and specifications specific to that device. The ASE Power specification is the output from the fiber pigtail.

Item # SLD830S-A10a SLD830S-A20
Operating Specifications Min Typical Max Min Typical Max
Center Wavelengthb 820 nm 830 nm 840 nm 820 nm 830 nm 840 nm
Operating Current - - 150 mA - - 200 mA
ASE Powerc 10 mW 13 mW - 20 mW 22 mW -
Optical 3 dB Bandwidthc 17 nm 20 nm - 17 nm 20 nm -
Optical 20 dB Bandwidthc - 50 nm - - 50 nm -
Gain Ripple (RMS)(Click for Plot) - 0.03 dB 0.15 dB - 0.03 dB 0.15 dB
Forward Voltagec - 2.0 V 2.5 V - 2.0 V 2.5 V
TEC Operation (Typical / Max @ TCASE = 25 °C / 70 °C)
TEC Current - 0.1 A 1.5 A - 0.1 A 1.5 A
TEC Voltage - 0.13 V 4.0 V - 0.13 V 4.0 V
Thermistor Resistance - 10 kΩ - - 10 kΩ -
Absolute Maximum Ratingsa
Absolute Max Current 150 mA 225 mA
Operating Case Temperature 0 to 70 °C
Storage Temperature -10 to 70°C
Pin Code 14 Pin, Type 1
Fiber Specifications
Fiber Type 780HP
Numerical Aperture 0.13
Core Diameter 4.4 µm
Mode Field Diameter (Nominal) 5.0 ± 0.5 µm @ 850 nm
Fiber Length 1.5 m
Connector FC/APC, 2.0 mm Narrow Key
  • These Operating Specifications are a consistent set of values which will yield the specified performance. Please note that exceeding the Absolute Maximum Ratings in the table may cause device failure.
  • The center wavelength with these devices is defined by an average weighted by the relative amplitude and will not correspond to peak power or the FWHM center wavelength due to the variability of the spectrum shape.
  • At Operating Current
Item # SLD1325
Center Wavelengtha 1325 nm
Bandwidth (FWHM) >100 nm
Operating Current <780 mA
ASE Power >10 mW
Maximum SLD Injection Current 780 mA
Maximum Voltage 4 V
Operating Temperature Range 0 to 40 °C
Isolation of Integrated Isolator >30 dB
TEC Operation
Max Thermoelectric Cooler Current 4 A
Max Thermoelectric Cooler Voltage 4 V
Thermistor Resistanceb 10 kΩ
Fiber Specifications
Fiber Pigtail SMF-28e
Fiber Length ~1 m
Fiber Connector FC/APC
Return Loss of FC/APC Connector >50 dB
  • The center wavelength with these devices is defined by an average weighted by the relative amplitude and may not correspond to peak power or the FWHM center wavelength due to the variability of the spectrum shape.
  • Steinhart - Hart Coefficients: C1 = 1.1291x10-3,
    C2 = 2.3413x10-4, and C3 = 0.8767x10-7

 

Center Wavelength Calculation

The center wavelength for these SLDs is determined by taking the weighted average of the intensity profile. For a given Optical Spectrum Analyzer (OSA) trace:

Weighted Average

where

  • Xi is the Wavelength of a Trace Data Point
  • Yi is the Amplitude of a Trace Data Point
  • CW is the Specified Center Wavelength
Theoretical Limit of Axial Resolution for a 1325 nm SD OCT system
Theoretical axial resolution for a Spectral Domain OCT System utilizing a 1325 nm light source with 100 nm bandwidth in air, assuming an ideal source with Gaussian spectral distribution.

The theoretical axial (depth) resolution of a Spectral Domain OCT imaging system is

SD-OCT Resolution Equation.

Here, Δz, is the axial resolution (FWHM of the autocorrelation function) while Δλ is the FWHM of the power spectrum of the SLD light source. The index of refraction (n) of air is ~1, so for a central wavelength (λ) of 1325 nm and a spectral bandwidth of 100 nm, the theoretical axial resolution would be approximately 7.7 µm (see plot). This equation assumes an ideal source with Gaussian spectral distribution. To reduce side-lobe artifacts that may arise from utilizing non-Gaussian sources, we recommend applying a spectral filter to the detected interferogram. Depending on the filter applied, the actual resolution may be reduced.

For applications that require higher resolutions than can be obtained with a single SLD, it is possible to combine a pair of SLDs with different central wavelengths to produce a light source with an extended spectral range. For more information on these types of light sources, please see our Extended Broadband Source.

Butterfly Package, Type 1

Pin drawing for butterfly package
Pin Description Pin Description
1 + TEC 14 - TEC
2 Thermistor 13 Case
3 NC 12 NC
4 NC 11 SLD Cathode
5 Thermistor 10 SLD Anode
6 NC 9 NC
7 NC 8 NC

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Posted Comments:
Poster:jjurado
Posted Date:2011-07-12 10:31:00.0
Response from Javier at Thorlabs to last poster: Thank you very much for your feedback. You are correct in asserting that the theoretical resolution is based on the assumption of a Gaussian profile. There are analytical filtering techniques which can be performed to reshape the spectrum of the SLD1325 to provide a Gaussian shape. The actual resolution will sacrifice a bit, but in practice it is nominal. We will add information to the resolution tab shortly to clarify this. Please do not hesitate to contact us at techsupport@thorlabs.com if you have any further questions or comments.
Poster:
Posted Date:2011-07-11 10:41:04.0
The theoretical resolution is based on a gaussian shape. The equation is not valid for this light source, but you suggest it would.
Poster:Tyler
Posted Date:2009-02-13 08:11:21.0
A response from Tyler at Thorlabs to xzhao: Thank you for pointing out the units mistake. It has been fixed.
Poster:xzhao
Posted Date:2009-02-13 00:30:17.0
Dear Webmaster, The Spec for SLD1325 should be Bandwidth* >100 nm but not Bandwidth* >100 mW Thanks, Xuefeng Zhao Thorlabs Japan

830 nm Superluminescent Diode for OCT

  • 830 nm Superluminescent Diode with 20 nm Typical 3 dB Bandwidth
  • Extremely Low Typical Gain Ripple of 0.03 dB (RMS)
  • 13 mW or 22 mW Typical Fiber-Coupled Output Power

These superluminescent laser diodes are designed to be used in OCT Systems that require an illumination source with extremely low typical gain ripple of 0.03 dB (RMS) and a relatively flat spectrum over a 20 nm wide 3 dB bandwidth. They are available with a typical fiber-coupled output power of 13 mW or 22 mW.

The specifications in the table below are typical. Each SLD is shipped with an individualized data sheet that includes dominant wavelength, output power, operating current, and other information specific to that device.

Item # SLD830S-A10 SLD830S-A20
Parametera Min Typical Max Min Typical Max
Operating Current - - 150 mA - - 200 mA
Center Wavelengthb 820 nm 830 nm 840 nm 820 nm 830 nm 840 nm
ASE Powerc,d 10 mW 13 mW - 20 mW 22 mW -
3 dB Optical Bandwidthc 17 nm 20 nm - 17 nm 20 nm -
20 dB Optical Bandwidthc - 50 nm - - 50 nm -
RMS Gain Ripple(Click for Plot) - 0.03 dB 0.15 dB - 0.03 dB 0.15 dB
Output Spectrum (Click to Enlarge) Optical Spectrum Optical Spectrum
LIV Plot (Click to Enlarge) LIV Curves LIV Curves
Fiber Type 780HP
  • Full specifications are available by clicking on the Specs tab above.
  • The center wavelength with these devices is defined by an average weighted by the relative amplitude and may not correspond to peak power or the FWHM center wavelength due to the variability of the spectrum shape.
  • At Operating Current
  • Corresponds to the output of the fiber pigtail.
Images of (a) the lens, (b) the anterior, and (c) the retina of the eye obtained using a Ganymede II SD-OCT System modified to integrate an SLD830S-A10 as a light source. The images each have an in-tissue depth of 6.2 mm and were taken using a 36 kHz A-scan rate.
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available / Ships
SLD830S-A10 Support Documentation
SLD830S-A1013 mW SLD, CWL = 830 nm, FWHM = 20 nm, Butterfly Pkg, SM Fiber, FC/APC
$1,688.00
Lead Time
SLD830S-A20 Support Documentation
SLD830S-A2022 mW SLD, CWL = 830 nm, FWHM = 20 nm, Butterfly Pkg, SM Fiber, FC/APC
$1,994.00
Lead Time

1325 nm Superluminescent Diode for OCT

Item #SLD1325
Parametera Min Typ Max
Operating Current - - 780 mA
Center Wavelengthb - 1325 nm -
ASE Powerc 10 mW - -
3 dB Optical Bandwidth 100 nm - -
Output Spectrum (Click to Enlarge)
LIV Plot (Click to Enlarge)
Fiber Type SMF-28e
Integrated Optical Isolator
Isolation 30 dB - -
  • Full specifications are available by clicking on the Specs tab above.
  • The center wavelength with these devices is defined by an average weighted by the relative amplitude and will not correspond to peak power or the FWHM center wavelength due to the variabilityof the spectrum shape.
  • Corresponds to the output of the fiber pigtail.
  • 1325 nm Center Wavelength with >100 nm Bandwidth
  • Integrated Optical Isolator for Enhanced Output Stability
  • FC/APC Terminated Fiber Pigtail Minimizes Optical Feedback

The SLD1325, with a typical center wavelength of 1325 nm, is designed to have an extremely broad bandwidth of >100 nm (FWHM), making it ideal for high-axial-resolution SD-OCT applications (see the Resolution SD-OCT tab above for more information). This SLD is packaged with an integrated TEC and thermistor for temperature control, as well as an optical isolator for enhanced optical stability. In addition to the SLD1325 sold here, Thorlabs offers an extended broadband SLD light source for OCT applications.

The SLD should be operated in a constant current constant temperature mode, which is relatively simple with the proper SLD mount and drivers. To mount and drive the SLD1325, Thorlabs recommends using the CLD1015 Compact Laser Diode Driver.

Note that the specifications in the table to the right are given as guidelines. The characterization sheet shipped with each SLD provides the min, max and recommended operating parameters and specifications specific to that device. All devices will exceed the bandwidth and power specifications listed below.

Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available / Ships
SLD1325 Support Documentation
SLD132510 mW (Min) SLD, CWL = 1325 nm, FWHM = 100 nm (Min), Butterfly Pkg, SM Fiber, FC/APC
$3,385.00
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