Abstract Submitted for the DAMOP 2000 Meeting of The American Physical Society
"Observation of polarization instabilities in a two-photon laser."
M. D. Stenner, W.J. Brown, O. Pfister, D. J. Gauthier, Duke University
We observe and analyze polarization instabilities in a two-photon
Raman laser based on two-photon optical amplification in laser driven
39K surrounded by a high finesse cavity. In this system,
there exist multiple frequency-degenerate quantum pathways between the
initial and final states, giving rise to amplification for different
states of polarization of the field. This tensor nature of the
interaction, together with the extreme nonlinear behavior of
two-photon lasers, open up the possibility of polarization
instabilities. We observe that the state of polarization of the beam
generated by the laser exhibits fast periodic and non-periodic
oscillation for a variety of experimental parameters.