Experimental results from an investigation of rf excitation of high-pressure CO2 waveguide lasers, performed to obtain continuous frequency tuning between line centers, are reported. Application of the rf technique has several potential advantages: stable output pulses; high-pulse repetition rate, good pulse-shape control by amplitude modulation of the rf excitation pulses; long sealed-off lifetime; and no requirement for preionization. We have recently obtained lasing at 10 atm,1 and this result opens the possibility of continuous tuning of rf CO2 lasers. For pulsed TE lasers the required gas pressure for continuous tuning is 2-5 atm2 for isotope mixtures and 8-12 atm3 for a single isotope. In this paper we report new results obtained with excitation power 4 times higher than in Ref. 1.

© 1982 Optical Society of America

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