A growing demand for compact high-power laser sources has recently stimulated significant interest in the development of planar waveguide laser geometries compatible with high-power laser diode bars and producing high beam quality laser output [1,2]. This can be achieved by use of cladding-pumping techniques such that the pump and the laser signals are guided by different, but spatially overlapping, waveguides. By engineering the doped region to be the central layer of a double-clad planar waveguide, fundamental-mode selection can be achieved . Fabrication of these structures is possible using pulsed laser deposition (PLD), which combines relatively high growth rates (up to 25-μm per hour ), the ability to dynamically control local refractive index , and the capability to grow active hetero-epitaxial multi-layered structures .
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