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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 40, Iss. 27 — Sep. 20, 2001
  • pp: 4904–4910

Ultrasensitive absorption spectroscopy with a high-finesse optical cavity and off-axis alignment

Joshua B. Paul, Larry Lapson, and James G. Anderson  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 40, Issue 27, pp. 4904-4910 (2001)

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A simple and easy to use method that allows high-finesse optical cavities to be used as absorption cells for spectroscopic purposes is presented. This method introduces a single-mode continuous-wave laser into the cavity by use of an off-axis cavity alignment geometry to eliminate systematically the resonances commonly associated with optical cavities, while preserving the absorption signal amplifying properties of such cavities. This considerably reduces the complexity of the apparatus compared with other high-resolution cavity-based absorption methods. Application of this technique in conjunction with either cavity ringdown spectroscopy or integrated cavity output spectroscopy produced absorption sensitivities of 1.5 × 10-9 cm-1 Hz-1/2 and 1.8 × 10-10 cm-1 Hz-1/2, respectively.

© 2001 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(000.2170) General : Equipment and techniques
(120.2230) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Fabry-Perot
(120.6200) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Spectrometers and spectroscopic instrumentation
(280.3420) Remote sensing and sensors : Laser sensors
(300.1030) Spectroscopy : Absorption
(300.6260) Spectroscopy : Spectroscopy, diode lasers

Original Manuscript: February 2, 2001
Revised Manuscript: May 21, 2001
Published: September 20, 2001

Joshua B. Paul, Larry Lapson, and James G. Anderson, "Ultrasensitive absorption spectroscopy with a high-finesse optical cavity and off-axis alignment," Appl. Opt. 40, 4904-4910 (2001)

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