We report on the efficient CW, Q-switched and mode-locked laser operation of a diode-pumped Yb:YVO4 laser. CW output power of about 1 W with slope efficiency of 59 % with respect to absorbed pump power was obtained. Passively Q-switched with a Cr4+:YAG saturable absorber, a Yb:YVO4 laser with Raman conversion was demonstrated. Q-switched 18.7-μJ and 3.6-μJ pulses with pulse durations of 17 ns and 6 ns were produced at 1018-nm fundamental and 1119.5-nm first-Stokes wavelengths, respectively. A diode-pumped Yb:YVO4 laser has been passively mode-locked using a semiconductor saturable-absorber mirror (SESAM). 120-fs pulses with an average output power of about 300 mW and a peak power as high as 14.5 kW were obtained at 1021 nm.

© 2005 Optical Society of America

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