Abstract

A recently proposed class of rare earth doped solid state lasers is described. These Ground State Depleted (GSD) lasers are characterized by a low laser ion doping density (5-10xl018 ions/cc) and a large fractional excited population inversion density (4-8xl018 ions/cc). For efficiency, these lasers must be pumped by narrowband (<few nm), intense (>10-50 kW/cm2) sources. Four level operation at room temperature is obtained and efficient lasing to the ground electronic state manifold is achieved. The design domain of GSD lasers is dominated by the pump transition cross section (2-10x10−20 cm2) and the associated saturation fluence/flux (2-10 J/cm2 and 10-50 kW/cm2). The GSD laser gain element is typically optically thick (Lambert Law) at the pump wavelength, but is substantially bleached at the working pump intensity.

© 1989 Optical Society of America

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