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Proceedings Paper

Ground-state depleted laser in neodymium-doped yttrium orthosilicate
Author(s): Raymond J. Beach; George F. Albrecht; Richard W. Solarz; William Franklin Krupke; Brian J. Comaskey; Scott C. Mitchell; Charles David Brandle; George W. Berkstresser
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Paper Abstract

A ground state depleted (GSD)1,2 laser has been demonstrated in the form of a Q-switched oscillator operating at 912 nm. Using Nd3+ as the active ion and Y2SiO5 as the host material, the laser transition is from the lowest lying stark level of the Nd3+4F3/2 level to a stark level 355 cm-1 above the lowest lying one in the 4I9/2 manifold. The necessity of depleting the ground 4I9/2 manifold is evident for this level scheme as transparency requires a 10% inversion. To achieve the high excitation levels required for the efficient operation of this laser, bleach wave pumping using an alexandrite laser at 745 nm has been employed. The existence of a large absorption feature at 810 nm also allows for the possibility of A1GaAs laser diode pumping. Using KNbO3, noncritical phase matching is possible at 140°C using d32 and has been demonstrated. The results of Q-switched laser performance and harmonic generation in KNbO3 will be presented. Orthosilicate is a monoclinic biaxial crystal. An oriented spectroscopic evaluation consisting of a Judd-Ofelt analysis of oriented absorption spectra and the measurements of oriented emission spectra has been completed and will be presented. Results of modeling using these spectroscopically determined parameters will be compared with the actual laser performance. The performance of this laser at 911 nm which allows accessing Cs atomic resonance filters through harmonic doubling will also be discussed. Orthosilicate can be grown in large boules of excellent optical quality using a Czochralski technique. Because of the relatively small 912 nm emission cross section of 2-3 x 10-20cm2 (orientation dependent) fluences of 10-20 J/cm2 must be circulated in the laser cavity for the efficient extraction of stored energy. This necessitates very aggressive laser damage thresholds. Results from the Reptile laser damage facility at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) will be presented showing Y2SiO5 bulk and AR sol-gel coated surface damage thresholds of greater than 40 J/cm2 for 10 nsec, 10 Hz, 1.06 μ pulses.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 April 1990
PDF: 21 pages
Proc. SPIE 1223, Solid State Lasers, (1 April 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.18408
Show Author Affiliations
Raymond J. Beach, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
George F. Albrecht, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Richard W. Solarz, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
William Franklin Krupke, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Brian J. Comaskey, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Scott C. Mitchell, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Charles David Brandle, AT&T Bell Labs. (United States)
George W. Berkstresser, AT&T Bell Labs. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1223:
Solid State Lasers
George Dube, Editor(s)

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