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Optical Engineering

Measurement of low-level gain in a visible chemical laser amplifier
Author(s): James M. Stephens; John Stout; Joseph Abraham; Martin Neumann; James L. Gole; Lee H. Sentman; Mariusz Zaczek
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Paper Abstract

High precision zero power gain measurements are used to demonstrate that the energy transfer sequence SiO*(b3?)+Na(3s2S) ?SiO(X1?+) 1 Na*(4d2D); Na*(4d2D) ? Na(3p2P)+hv(569 nm); Na*(4d2D)+hv(569 nm) ? Na(3p2P)+2hv(569 nm) represents a viable visible chemical laser amplifier candidate. Dual beam radiometry is used to advantage in a sensitive and stable measurement system, which provides correction for: 1. source intensity fluctuations, 2. variations in source spectral density, 3. variations in detector spectral response, and 4. gain variations in detector and amplification stages. Experiments are performed to determine the amplification of a probe beam at 569 nm by an extended path length (nominal gain length ~5 cm) reaction energy transfer zone. For these quantitative gain measurements, the stability of the probe signal sets a limit on the sensitivity of the measurement. Considerable effort was expended to insure equivalent path lengths for probe and reference beams to compensate for source output variations so that the reference signal possesses the same temporal behavior as the probe, and the probe and reference optical systems image the same portion of the source on the detector. A gain coefficient, conservatively estimated as 0.8 to 1.53X10-3 cm-1, was measured. Based on this result, a Rigrod analysis indicates an expected full laser cavity output power between one and ten watts.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 December 2001
PDF: 14 pages
Opt. Eng. 40(12) doi: 10.1117/1.1412619
Published in: Optical Engineering Volume 40, Issue 12
Show Author Affiliations
James M. Stephens, Georgia Inst of Technology (United States)
John Stout, Georgia Inst of Technology (United States)
Joseph Abraham, Georgia Inst of Technology (United States)
Martin Neumann, Georgia Inst of Technology (United States)
James L. Gole, Georgia Institute of Technology (United States)
Lee H. Sentman, Univ. of Illinois/Urbana-Champaign (United States)
Mariusz Zaczek, University of Illinois (United States)

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