I report the observation of continuous-wave laser oscillation in a Nd:YAG sphere. The spherical laser is excited by a dye laser that is focused to pump selectively certain regions of the sphere. With careful mode matching, single-frequency oscillation is obtained. The observed emission patterns agree well with the modes predicted by a classical treatment of a spherically symmetric resonator. These modes are described by products of spherical harmonics and Bessel functions, in contrast to the standard Gaussian-beam modes of a linear cavity.
© 1987 Optical Society of America
T. Baer, "Continuous-wave laser oscillation in a Nd:YAG sphere," Opt. Lett. 12, 392-394 (1987)