Optical bistability in a CO2 infrared laser containing SF6 as a saturable intracavity absorber has been studied under dynamic conditions as a function of a time-dependent laser control parameter. The width of the optical bistability region, the fluctuations in the bistability switching values, and the dependence on the initial conditions have been investigated in this transient optical bistability. A numerical solution of the laser rate equations provides a good interpretation of the experimental results, but some experimental observations cannot be completely explained.
© 1987 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: October 7, 1986
Manuscript Accepted: January 6, 1987
Published: June 1, 1987
E. Arimondo, D. Dangoisse, C. Gabbanini, E. Menchi, and F. Papoff, "Dynamic behavior of bistability in a laser with a saturable absorber," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 4, 892-899 (1987)