We have constructed a blue laser source consisting of an amplified, grating tuned diode laser that is frequency doubled by a KNbO<sub>3</sub> crystal in a compact standing wave cavity and produces as much as 200 mW of internal second-harmonic power. We have analyzed the unusual characteristics of this standing wave cavity to clarify the advantages and disadvantages of this configuration as an alternative to a ring cavity for second-harmonic generation. We emphasize its efficiency and stability and the fact that it has an inherent walk-off compensation, similar to twin crystal configurations. We demonstrate its utility for laser cooling and trapping of earth alkalis by stabilizing the laser to the 461-nm transition of strontium, using a heat pipe, and then forming a magneto-optic trap of strontium from a Zeeman-slowed atomic beam.
© 2004 Optical Society of America
(020.0020) Atomic and molecular physics : Atomic and molecular physics
(140.0140) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers and laser optics
(190.0190) Nonlinear optics : Nonlinear optics
(230.0230) Optical devices : Optical devices
Bruce G. Klappauf, Yannick Bidel, David Wilkowski, Thierry Chanelière, and Robin Kaiser, "Detailed Study of an Efficient Blue Laser Source by Second-Harmonic Generation in a Semimonolithic Cavity for the Cooling of Strontium Atoms," Appl. Opt. 43, 2510-2527 (2004)