LASER DIGITAL DEVICES.
Final rept. 1 Jul 63-28 Apr 65,
RCA LABS PRINCETON NJ
Pagination or Media Count:
Continuously pumped lasers are considered as components for digital circuits in which all of the processing signals are in the form of optical energy. The operation of the laser digital circuits is based on signal gain derived from a laser amplifier and nonlinear saturable response of optical materials to laser signals. The two nonlinear processes are quenching of the output of a laser oscillator and saturation of optical absorption. A simple two-energy-state model is used to relate the speed of operation of the laser digital devices to their material properties and the required energy density of the optical signals. The validity of this model to describe a large-signal response of laser material is verified by spectroscopic studies of saturation of absorption of the R lines of ruby and the singlet absorption bands of phthalocyanine solutions. The same model is also applied to describe the large-signal response of GaAs lasers. It is shown that semiconductor lasers are the most promising components for laser digital circuits. Measurements of both the near- and far-field emission patterns and the spectroscopic characteristics of GaAs lasers, oscillators, and amplifiers are reported. A laser inverter, laser bistable oscillator, and laser monostable oscillator are examined as switching devices that could be implemented with GaAs lasers. The GaAs laser inverter is further evaluated as a general-purpose switching circuit, and experimental tests of the operation of this device are reported. Author