The concept of a high-voltage prepulse to allow efficient energy transfer from the pulse-forming line to the discharge load was proposed last year.1 The problem with conventional circuits is that the high charging voltage required to give a fast uniform breakdown is inconsistent with impedance-matched operation. As a result, poor energy transfer is achieved. The use of a high-voltage prepulse, which is isolated from the main low-impedance line during breakdown, provides nearly perfect impedance matching for the duration of the main pulse. A comprehensive XeCl laser model predicted that a transfer efficiency of 93 % was possible using this technique, which would result in an overall laser efficiency of 4.2%.

© 1984 Optical Society of America

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