Stark cell stabilization of a CO(2) laser
Knolhoff, Larry Edward
Crittenden, E. C., Jr.
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Studies have been conducted of the frequency stabilization of the output from a Sylvania 941 Carbon Dioxide laser by active comparison with a Stark-tuned NH(2)D line center in an absorption cell. A dithered Stark voltage gave a peak-detection correction signal fed back to a PZT mounted laser resonator mirror to control the cavity optical length. Operation of an integrator incorporated in the feedback loop to improve the system stability has been investigated. A method was demonstrated of using the integrator to locate the desired laser vibronic transition by scanning the laser through its spectral signature prior to initiation of servo operation. An unexpected discontinuity in the absorption lineshape of a Stark-tunable cell was discovered which made the cell unsuitable for generation of the feedback signal. A new and more versatile Stark cell was designed for test and evaluation of cell plate configuration and fabrication.