Abstract

We report, what is to our knowledge, the first passively Q-switched operation of a 2.3-μm Tm3+:YLF laser by using a Cr2+:ZnSe saturable absorber. In the experiments, a tunable Ti3+:sapphire laser was used to end pump the Tm3+:YLF gain medium inside an x cavity. A Cr2+:ZnSe saturable absorber was also included in the cavity to initiate passive Q switching. At all pump power levels above lasing threshold, passively Q-switched operation of the Tm3+:YLF laser could be obtained at 2309 nm with pulse durations and repetition frequencies in the ranges of 1.2–1.4 μs and 0.3–2.1 kHz, respectively. Analysis of power dependent repetition rate data further gave an estimated value of 3.1% for the round-trip saturable loss of the Cr2+:ZnSe saturable absorber.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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