With increasing discharge excitation, saturation and subsequent reduction of the gain and oscillation output power in cw and TE CO2 lasers have frequently been observed, Ballik et al.1 have shown that this cannot be completely accounted for by discharge deterioration and gas heating effects, Davies et al.2 sought to show that such output reduction is explained by overpumping of the CO2 to very high values of the v3(OO0n) mode vibrational temperature T3 beyond the optimum value for 00°1 level population (~4500 K).

© 1982 Optical Society of America

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