The intracavity photon density and the initial population-inversion density in the diode-pumped passively Q-switched laser rate equations are assumed to be Gaussian spatial distributions. These space-dependent rate equations are solved numerically, and a group of general curves are generated. These curves clearly show the dependence of the pulse characteristics on the pump- to laser-mode size ratio and the parameters of the gain medium, the saturable absorber, and the resonator. They can also be used to estimate the pulse parameters of an arbitrary diode-pumped passively Q-switched laser and to determine the optimal pump- to laser-mode size ratio. In addition, these curves are not limited to diode-pumped lasers. Sample calculations for a diode-pumped laser and a flash-lamp pumped laser are presented to demonstrate the use of the curves and the related formulas.
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