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Open-aperture Z-scan study for absorption saturation: accurate measurement of saturation intensity in YLF:Yb for optical refrigeration

Abstract

Knowledge of saturation intensity of gain or absorption plays a fundamental role in a variety of applications ranging from lasers to many nonlinear optical processes. Here, we present an analytical expression for open-aperture Z-scan transmission for accurately measuring the saturation intensity in the low absorbance samples but at arbitrary pump intensities. We exploit this formalism to investigate the absorption saturation of ${{\rm LiYF}_4}:{{\rm Yb}^{3 +}}$ (YLF:Yb) in the anti-Stokes excitation region for optical refrigeration at high pump intensities. An absorption saturation intensity of $14.5 \pm 1{\rm kW}/{{\rm cm}^2}$ was measured in YLF:Yb at 1020 nm (${\rm E}||c$) at room temperature.

© 2021 Optical Society of America

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