• 2497 Citations
  • 24 h-Index

Research output per year

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Personal profile


I received an MPhys degree (1997) and a DPhil (2001) from Oxford University, UK. Following two years as a Research Assistant in the Clarendon Laboratory at Oxford, I moved to Macquarie University in 2004, where I completed an ARC Research fellowship (APDF). I now hold a professorship in the MQ Photonics research centre. My research has covered a wide range of laser and nonlinear optics. Experimental highlights include: working with national-scale PW laser to make XUV lasers; building 25 fs Raman lasers in the IR and the first ultrafast cerium lasers in the UV; building 22 ps Q-switched microchip lasers; and CW single longitudinal mode lasers using Raman-, polariton-, and  Brillouin-scattering. My publications are characterized by a strong link between experiments and supporting theory, using both numerical and analytic modelling, with theory highlights including an invited review of Raman theory, and an analytic theory to model polariton THz lasers. Successful industry translations include a commercialised product with Optos for retinal surgery, and current IP licenses with Jenoptik GmbH and M Squared Lasers Ltd.  

I have supervised 6 completed PhD students and has one current student. Two graduated students are now in high-tech industry (Renishaw, PLC, UK, and Coherent Scotland, UK), one is in a science funding consultancy (forderbar GmbH), one is a postdoc at Capital Normal University, Beijing, and one is at CERN (after a postdoc at MIT and a position of beam scientist at SLAC). 

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Terahertz lasers in the fight against illicit substances

Lee, A., Pask, H., Spence, D., Reedy, B., Hempler, N., Tahtouh, M. & De Grazia, A.


Project: Other

Precision frequency spectrum diagnostic for pulsed lasers

Mildren, R., Pask, H., Spence, D., Lee, A., Jackson, S., Williams, R., Fuerbach, A., Kitzler, O. & Piracha, A.

1/01/17 → …

Project: Research

The Ultimate Multimode Photonics Characterisation Tool

Gross, S., Steel, M., Ams, M., Spence, D., Hudson, D., Arriola, A., Collins, M., Douglass, G. & Gretzinger, T.

1/01/17 → …

Project: Research

Research Outputs

Diamond Brillouin laser in the visible

Bai, Z., Williams, R. J., Kitzler, O., Sarang, S., Spence, D. J., Wang, Y., Lu, Z. & Mildren, R. P., 1 Mar 2020, In : APL photonics. 5, 3, 5 p., 031301.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
  • 2 Downloads (Pure)

    Diamond sodium guide star laser

    Yang, X., Kitzler, O., Spence, D. J., Bai, Z., Feng, Y. & Mildren, R. P., 1 Apr 2020, In : Optics Letters. 45, 7, p. 1898-1901 4 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 1 Citation (Scopus)

    Improvements in terahertz lasers and terahertz extraction

    Lee, A., Pask, H. M. & Spence, D. J., 5 Feb 2020, IPC No. H01S 1/02, G02F 1/35, Patent No. EP3602700, Priority date 24 Mar 2017, Priority No. 2017901057

    Research output: Patent

  • Investigating single-longitudinal-mode operation of a continuous wave second Stokes diamond Raman ring laser

    Li, M., Kitzler, O. & Spence, D. J., 20 Jan 2020, In : Optics Express. 28, 2, p. 1738-1744 7 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 2 Citations (Scopus)

    Linewidth-narrowing of a continuous wave terahertz polariton laser using an intracavity etalon

    Zheng, Y., Lee, A., Spence, D. & Pask, H., 1 Jan 2020, In : Optics Letters. 45, 1, p. 157-160 4 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle