Over the past decade, optical pumping of molecular gases has become a very successful method of generating laser radiation in the mid-IR and far-IR regions. Many hundreds of optically pumped far-IR lasers (cw and pulsed) now cover the spectral range between 34 μm and 2 mm. However, at shorter wavelengths optically pumped mid-IR lasers only operate on a pulsed basis. Mid-IR lasers are particularly attractive for their potential application in fields such as laser photochemistry or laser isotope separation.

© 1982 Optical Society of America

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