Abstract

We report on passive offset frequency stability in free-running applications and active offset frequency stability achieved by use of a frequency-locking technique for a Q-switched Z-fold rf-excited waveguide CO2 laser with two channels. The laser structure of common electrodes and two channels has the advantage of compensating for the frequency variation caused by variations in temperature, cavity length, gas refractive index, and mechanical vibrations, so its offset frequency stability is higher than that of two separate lasers. In the experiments, the offset frequency shift was less than 6 MHz for 3 min in free-running mode. The technique of active offset frequency locking by counting was also introduced. The beat frequency shifting value was smaller than ±0.5 MHz in the long term.

© 2005 Optical Society of America

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