A diode-pumped Nd:YAG laser, passively Q-switched by a Cr4+YAG saturable absorber and intra-cavity frequency-doubled by a LBO crystal is described. The device produces 532 nm pulses of 263-µJ energy and 87.8-ns width at a pulse repetition rate of 3.8 kHz. The dynamics of the pulse formation is discussed by introducing a nonlinear loss term, caused by the frequency conversion, into the coupled rate equations describing the operation of passively Q-switched lasers.

© 2001 Optical Society of America

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