Abstract

We have demonstrated key advances towards a solid-state laser amplifier at 1.03 μm for global remote wind sensing. We designed end-pumped zig-zag slab amplifiers to achieve high gain. We overcame parasitic oscillation limitations using claddings on the slab's total internal reflection (TIR) and edge surfaces to confine the pump and signal light by TIR and allow leakage of amplified spontaneous emission rays that do not meet the TIR condition. This enables e3, e5, and e8 single-, double-, and quadruple-pass small-signal amplifier gain, respectively. The stored energy density is 15.6J/cm3, a record for a laser-diode end-pumped Yb:YAG zig-zag slab amplifier.

© 2007 Optical Society of America

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