We report a resonantly fiber-laser-pumped Er:YAG laser operating at the eye-safe wavelength of 1645 nm, exhibiting 43% optical efficiency and 54% incident slope efficiency and emitting 7-W average power when repetitively <i>Q</i> switched at 10 kHz. To our knowledge, this is the best performance (conversion efficiency and average power) obtained from a bulk solid-state <i>Q</i> -switched erbium laser. At a 1.1-kHz pulse repetition frequency the laser produces 3.4-mJ pulses with a corresponding peak power of 162 kW. Frequency doubling to produce 822.5-nm, 4.7-kW pulses at 10 kHz was performed to demonstrate the laser’s utility.
© 2004 Optical Society of America
(140.3070) Lasers and laser optics : Infrared and far-infrared lasers
(140.3500) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, erbium
(140.3540) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, Q-switched
(280.3400) Remote sensing and sensors : Laser range finder
York E. Young, Scott D. Setzler, Kevin J. Snell, Peter A. Budni, Thomas M. Pollak, and E. P. Chicklis, "Efficient 1645-nm Er:YAG laser," Opt. Lett. 29, 1075-1077 (2004)