Abstract

The time dynamics of the intracavity absorption in a Ti:sapphire intracavity laser spectrometer was studied in the long-generation time domain. Weak nonlinearity of the dependence of sensitivity on the generation time was observed for a standing-wave laser at 1 ms. Several possible mechanisms for nonlinear mode coupling that could be responsible for this effect are considered. Parasitic interference made the measurements for longer generation times difficult. In a ring configuration of the laser the parasitic interference was excluded. No nonlinearity was observed for atmospheric-water absorption up to an equivalent absorption path length of 900 km. An analysis of the spectral narrowing made it possible to conclude that the equivalent absorption path in the ring Ti:sapphire can exceed 30,000 km. Limitations that result from the birefringence of the laser crystal and ways of avoiding them are also discussed.

© 1995 Optical Society of America

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