Abstract

By using a 0.25-ps nearly transform-limited pulse and both 16- and 75-ps strongly chirped pulses of the same bandwidth, measurements of the effective saturation fluence (Esat) of a XeCl discharge amplifier have been performed. We find that while Esat for the 16-ps pulse is comparable with that of the 0.25-ps pulse, pulse stretching to a width of 75 ps increases the effective Esat by 35%. However, the measured values of Esat for the 16- and 75-ps pulses are significantly less than would be expected for transform-limited pulses of the same pulse widths. A simple rate-equation model, which takes into account variation of the small-signal gain across the gain bandpass and which assumes that Esat is enhanced for the longer pulse widths only by population decay of the lower electronic state, predicts the measured values of Esat to within the experimental error.

© 1991 Optical Society of America

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