Design and performance of a transverse discharge, UV-preionized mercury-bromide laser

C. J. Zietkiewicz, B. A. Knecht, C. M. Herring, N. P. Ostrom, J. G. Eden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The design, construction, and operating characteristics of a pulsed, transverse discharge-pumped HgBr laser, capable of operation at pulse repetition frequencies as high as 100 Hz, are presented. Having an active length of 53 cm, this laser system is preionized by two sets of spark arrays and average single pulse energies of 55 mJ are produced from Ne/N2/HgBr2 (natural abundance) vapor mixtures, with an output coupling of 50% and ∼17 J of energy stored in the pulse forming network. Based on measurements of the laser pulse energy for several values of cavity output coupling, the small signal gain coefficient and saturation intensity for the laser were determined to be 4.7% cm-1 and 260 kW cm-2, respectively. The single pass gain-to-loss ratio is 12.4.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1031-1044
Number of pages14
JournalOptical and Quantum Electronics
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2002


  • HgBr laser
  • Laser design
  • Laser performance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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