Photonics Dictionary

ion laser

A laser in which the transition involved in stimulated emission of radiation takes place between two levels of an ionized gas. The gases are electrically excited in a container called a plasma tube, which typically consists of an alumina or ceramic envelope that is vacuum sealed at each end by either two Brewster windows or one Brewster window and one sealed-cavity mirror. The optical cavity is defined by a 100-percent-reflecting mirror and a partially transmissive output coupling mirror. It provides moderate to high continuous-wave output of typically 1 mW to 10 W. For single-frequency operation, the high reflector is replaced with a Brewster prism, and an etalon is inserted.
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