Abstract

A survey of the techniques required to produce photon energy densities in the range 1017–1025 ergs cm−3 is given. It is concluded that light amplification using rods cannot achieve these powers and the concept of the exponential amplifier is proposed. It is believed that any laser probe capable of such powers would require the use of neodymium-doped glass. Costs for this ultimate model would be comparable with those for powerful particle accelerators. Initially, the range 1017–1025 ergs cm−3 could be catered for by conventional flashtube excitation. The upper limits would require excitation by photoemitting diodes, with a 100-Å to 200-Å band at 8800 Å capable of multikilowatt pulsed outputs over 1 cm2 aperture in a period much less than the 300–700 μsec spontaneous decay time of the laser level. If a suitable sensitizer could be found, then a wider range of photoemitting diodes could be considered.

© 1967 Optical Society of America

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