The requirement for diffraction-limited single frequency sources has led to the development of a number of compact diode pumped solid state lasers. In particular, unidirectional operation of a monolithic Nd:YAG ring resonator1'2 in which spatial hole burning is suppressed has led to reliable single-longitudinal-mode operation. By virtue of their monolithic construction such lasers have so far been confined to low power or gain-switched operation. However, there are many applications for which higher power pulsed operation is required. To meet this need we constructed a compact diode pumped O-switched Nd:YAG ring laser, consisting of only three optical components (Fig. 1). This laser differs from its conventional standing-wave counterpart through the inclusion of a rhombic prism, which serves both to define the ring path geometry and by virtue of its Brewster angled surfaces to act as a polarizer.

© 1989 Optical Society of America

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