Stable laser operation, which is essential for quantum control experiments as well as many other phase dependent processes, is investigated with respect to the influence of amplitude and spectral phase noise. Simulations are first performed and an easy to implement experimental method is presented to monitor the amplitude and phase stability of an ultrafast laser system. As an illustration of this stability assessment technique, the data monitoring is used to guide the identification and elimination of fluctuations in the laser amplification process. Through a number of practical alterations of the amplifier configuration, the stability of the laser system was greatly and consistently improved. Fluctuations on different time scales were eliminated, with special emphasis given to maintaining a stable spectral phase.
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