The pulse-pair generator consists of a Michelson interferometer with a resonant scanner that produces a rapid scanning delay. A series of ultrashort pulses emitted from the laser is converted into a series of orthogonally polarized pulse pairs by the pulse-pair generator. When a single pulse enters the interferometer, it is split into two pulses by a polarizing beamsplitter (PBS). The pulse (pump pulse) that travels along the arm without the scanner is reflected back by a fixed mirror. The pulse (probe pulse) in the other arm with the scanner is reflected back with a time delay controlled by the delay scanner and spatially recombined with the pump pulse at the PBS. A quarter waveplate inserted in each arm rotates the polarization of the reflected pulses by 90° so that both the recombined pulses exit at the output port of the interferometer with orthogonal polarizations. This configuration enables us to efficiently use all the pulses for the CARS generation and also avoid disrupting the mode-locking state of the laser often caused by back-reflected pulses into the laser cavity.

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