Optimizing laser and optical systems
McGuire, Michael Richard
Master of Science
A simple narrow linewidth dye laser cavity design is presented. The design features the use of a prism primarily as a beam expander rather than the more traditional use of a prism as a dispersive element. This feature allows a tremendous simplification to be made over the usual dye laser cavity by eliminating beam expanding telescopes, etalons, and intra-cavity lenses, and by shortening the cavity by as much as a factor of two. The net result is an order of magnitude improvement in the line-width of the system at a fraction of the cost of the system currently in use in the Atomic Collisions Laboratory. Further refinements are discussed that increase the efficiency of the system while maintaining the improvement in line-width. Projected refinements are also discussed. The use of elastic membranes for electric field modeling has been successfully applied in the design of an ion beam deflection system. The instrument subsequently constructed demonstrated the usefulness of this technique in the field of electro-optics. A brief report on the theory of elastic membrane electric field modeling and its application in this instance is presented as an appendix following the main effort of the thesis.