Section 5: Population Inversion

Now that we have a greater understanding of how atoms move in laser media, we are ready to discuss in further detail the physics of laser pumping and, most importantly, the conditions for population inversion. You may have heard it said that population inversion is the necessary condition for lasing, but may not have understood why. Well, if I have done my duty as Optics Girl properly, the next few sections should make this clearer!

Table of Contents:

  1. Steady-State Laser Pumping and Population Inversion
  2. Laser Gain Saturation
  3. Transient Laser Pumping
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