Abstract

Visible transitions in the blue, green, and red of Pr3+ ions are of interest for laser applications. A description of spectroscopic properties of this rare earth ion in Zr–Ba–La–Al (ZBLA) fluorozirconate glass matrix is presented, using an original approach. Magnetic-dipole and electric-dipole contributions are calculated, in the context of the Judd–Ofelt theory, to determine the Ωt (t=2, 4, 6) parameters, lifetime, and branching ratios of P30 emitting level. Influence of overlapping transitions and sensitized transitions are discussed, as well as the use of the standard or normalized method. Branching ratios are measured using an experimental method and compared to theoretical ones. The influence of higher energy and thermally populated P31 and I16 levels on the P30 lifetime is also studied. Considering this influence, a good agreement is found between theoretical and experimental P30 lifetimes. Finally, emission cross sections are calculated for the visible transitions, using either the reciprocity method or the Füchtbauer–Ladenburg formula, for different calculated Judd–Ofelt parameters, highlighting the ability of Pr3+-doped ZBLA to be used as a laser material.

© 2013 Optical Society of America

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