Design and construction of a prototype metal vapor laser Ca-Hg at 4847 °A

An experimental program has been conducted with the goal of producing laser action within calcium vapor at 4847°A. The metastable 6p3P2 mercury state is utilized in an attempt to cause a population inversion in the 7s1S0 state of calcium. Laser action is expected in the 7s1S0 to 4p1P1 transition of the neutral calcium atom. Although laser action has not yet been detected, this thesis will discuss possible causes for the lack of laser action as well as proposing modifications for future experimentation.