The copper vapor laser (CVL) produces output at two wavelengths, 511 and 578 nm. These lines do not have common upper or lower levels. It would be extremely desirable to be able to extract the population of both upper levels on one transition only. Whether this is feasible depends critically on the extent to which the population can be transferred between them during a laser pulse. There are several mechanisms which might cause such population transfer: copper-copper, copper-buffer gas, and copper-electron collisions. In normal lasing conditions, calculations indicate that copper-buffer gas collisions should dominate over copper-copper collisions.1 There are insufficient data to predict whether copper-electron collisions are competitive.

© 1989 Optical Society of America

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