Image Number 13 for United States Patent #5682400.
Disclosed is a gas laser utilizing high frequency discharge excitation in the area of sonic or supersonic/subsonic transfer gas flow. The laser uses various types of gases and mixtures of gases as the active medium and provides for pre-ionization of the gaseous medium before using high frequency discharge excitation. The gas is supplied into a receiver, and has downstream therefrom a supersonic nozzle for acceleration of the active gaseous flow to high subsonic or supersonic speeds in order to provide intensive dynamic cooling of the active gas medium. The gas is excited using high frequency discharge excitation in the critical area of the supersonic nozzle or downstream therefrom. The high frequency discharge and excitation can also occur within the optical resonator region which is located within the supersonic area of the nozzle. The present invention provides compact, efficient and super-powerful continuous, quasi-continuous and pulse laser systems with wavelengths from 0.3 mkm to 10.6 mkm with a high quality output beam. The present laser device may be utilized in scientific, commercial, aerospace and free space applications.