Abstract

Experiments are described whose aim is to understand the way in which the light from a pulsed dye laser becomes polarized when there is a simple tilted glass plate in the cavity. If the process consists of a competition between orthogonal linear polarizations, the way the degree of polarization depends on the anisotropy of the cavity loss can be understood approximately by using results of a two-mode rate equation analysis of the laser. It is necessary to suppose that there is a delay between onset of laser action and detection of the laser pulse, however; the delay required is much less than the pulse length. The detailed time dependences of the light in the two orthogonal modes do not follow this model.

© 1978 Optical Society of America

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