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Proceedings Paper

Gain and lasing of optically pumped metastable rare gas atoms
Author(s): Jiande Han; Michael C. Heaven
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Paper Abstract

Optically pumped atomic gas lasers are currently being developed in several laboratories. The objective is to construct high-powered lasers that also exhibit excellent beam quality. This is achieved by using the gas laser medium to phase combine the outputs from multiple solid state lasers. To date, the focus has been on optically pumped alkali vapor lasers. Considerable progress has been made, but there are technical challenges associated with the reactivity of the metal atoms. Rare gas atoms (Rg) excited to the np5(n+1)s 3P2 configuration are metastable and have spectral properties that are closely similar to those of the alkali metals. In principle, optically pumped lasers could be constructed using excitation of the np5(n+1)p ← np5(n+1)s transitions. We have demonstrated this potential by observing gain and lasing for optically pumped Ne*, Ar*, Kr* and Xe*. Three-level lasing schemes were used, with He or Ar as the collisional energy transfer agent that established the population inversion. These laser systems have the advantage using inert reagents that are gases at room temperature.

Paper Details

Date Published: 8 November 2012
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 8547, High-Power Lasers 2012: Technology and Systems, 85470Z (8 November 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.976274
Show Author Affiliations
Jiande Han, Emory Univ. (United States)
Michael C. Heaven, Emory Univ. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8547:
High-Power Lasers 2012: Technology and Systems
Harro Ackermann; Willy L. Bohn, Editor(s)

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