, Volume 74, Issue 4-5, pp 367-374

Accurate method for the measurement of absorption cross sections of solid-state saturable absorbers

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Abstract.

A rigorous approach taking into account both the temporal and spatial distributions of the pulsed probe beam used for transmission measurements of solid-state saturable absorbers is applied to characterise these absorbers accurately. The use of this method can significantly influence the resulting value for the ground-state absorption cross section. It also permits us to avoid the introduction of an artificial excited-state absorption in systems where, according to energy-level diagrams, no such loss should occur. This is illustrated in the case of passive Q-switchers for 1.5-μm lasers such as Co2+-doped LaMgAl11O19 and MgAl2O4 and Co2+- or Cr2+-doped ZnSe and ZnS.

Received: 21 November 2001 / Revised version: 22 January 2002 / Published online: 14 March 2002