Misalignment of unstable optical resonators can have significant deleterious effects on the transverse modes. As previously reported,1 actual mode switching may occur at mirror tilt angles that are small compared with the geometrical critical angle. Here the changes in the modes themselves with such misalignments are examined for an unstable resonator with circular aperture. The bare-cavity modes and eigenvalues are calculated using a diffractive optics code, and both their near-field and far-field intensity distributions are plotted.

© 1984 Optical Society of America

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