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ARPA Solid State Laser and Nonlinear Materials Program.
SCHWARTZ ELECTRO-OPTICS INC CONCORD MA RESEARCH DIV
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The Research Division of Schwartz Electro-Optics, as part of the ARPA Solid State Laser and Nonlinear Materials Program, conducted a three-year study Erbium-Laser-Based Infrared Sources. The aim of the study was to improve the understanding of semiconductor-laser-pumped, infrared IR solid state lasers based on the trivalent rare-earth ion erbium Er doped into a variety of host crystals. The initial program plan emphasized operation of erbium-doped materials on the 2.8-3.0 micrometers laser transition. Pulsed, Q-switched sources using that transition, when employed as a pump source for parametric oscillators, can provide tunable mid-IR energy. The dynamics of erbium lasers are more complex than conventional neodymium Nd-doped lasers and we intended to use pump-probe techniques to measure the level and temporal behavior of gain in various materials. To do so we constructed a number of different cw Er-doped lasers as probe sources and employed the CrLiSAFLiSrAlF6 laser as a pulsed pump source that would simulate pulsed diode arrays. We identified the 970-nm wavelength pump band of Er as the most efficient and were able to make use of recently developed cw and pulsed InGaAs strained-quantum-well diode lasers in the effort. At the conclusion of the program we demonstrated the first pulsed diode bar pumping of the most promising materials for pulsed operation, the oxide garnets YSGG and GGG and the fluoride BaY2F8. jg p.1
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