Influence of the pre-pulse plasma electron density on the performance of elemental copper vapour lasers

Robert J. Carman*, Michael J. Withford, Daniel J. W. Brown, James A. Piper

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A detailed computer model for the kinetics in an elemental copper vapour laser (Cu-Ne-H2) has been used to investigate the importance of the pre-pulse electron density on the performance and lasing characteristics of such a device. The results show that the laser output power and operating efficiency are increased by 65% and 100%, respectively, at a pulse repetition frequency of 17 kHz, if the pre-pulse electron density is reduced by a factor of 5-10. Modelling of the plasma kinetics during the afterglow period suggests that such a reduction is brought about when trace quantities (∼ 0.3%) of HCl are introduced into the plasma to increase the electron density decay rates via dissociative attachment reactions. The predicted improvements in laser performance which occur as a result of a reduced pre-pulse electron density are consistent with the observed operating characteristics of Kinetically Enhanced copper vapour lasers which use HCl-H2-Ne buffer gas mixtures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-104
Number of pages6
JournalOptics Communications
Volume157
Issue number1-6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 1998

Keywords

  • copper laser
  • HCl
  • kinetic enhancement
  • kinetics
  • modelling
  • plasma

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