Abstract

We use a Mach–Zehdner interferometric technique to study the piezo-optical properties of Cs2HgCl4 crystals at room temperature. All piezo-optical (πmn) and photoelastic (p in) tensor constants are obtained. A substantial photoelastic effect and low ultrasonic velocities in these crystals determine a relatively high figure of merit M 2 for isotropic diffraction (for a certain geometry of acousto-optical interactions, M 2 ∼ 110 × 10-15 s3/kg). The new material may be considered, therefore, a candidate for applications in acousto-optical devices. The dependence of the acoustic walk-off angle on the direction of sound propagation is calculated for the principal crystallographic planes.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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