By John G. Webster (Editor)
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Hence, a large bandwidth as well as a long resonator with a large number of modes (small mode separation) are both desirable. The former enables production of short-duration pulses, and the latter ensures larger separation between pulses with a cleaner baseline. Dye lasers, with broad spectral widths, have played a central role in the development of ultra-short-duration light pulses and investigation of ultrafast processes in nature. Amplification of ultrashort (ȁ100 fs) dye laser pulses in high-energy excimer laser amplifiers, with prior frequency conversion when necessary, has produced few 100 fs pulses with 1 TW (terawatt) to 4 TW output power in the blue UV region (11).
For obtaining the same effective FSR and passband width as that of two etalons in tandem with only one etalon, its surface reflectivities must be increased that would result in higher losses. As a result of unrestricted spectral narrowing, in sharp contrast to pulsed laser pumped dye lasers, less than 1% extra loss for the unwanted modes just away from the peak of the thick-etalon transmission profile is sufficient to restrict lasing in the selected mode located at the peak. Such survival of the fittest mode is, however, interrupted by the formation of standing wave patterns due to superposition of the counterpropagating light waves in the linear cavity.
Figure 7 shows the schematic of a three-mirror folded resonator in a near-collinear longitudinal pumping geometry used for CW dye lasers. This geometry was a consequence of the need to focus the dye laser radiation at the dye jet for saturating the gain and for maximizing overlap with the gain region. The resonator consists of a short arm in which the dye laser beam is focused and a long arm in which the beam is collimated and coupled out through a flat mirror. Optical elements for spectral narrowing and wavelength tuning are placed in the long arm.
50.Quantum Electronics by John G. Webster (Editor)