We demonstrated that transverse mode can be controlled by manipulating gain distributioninaYb:YAGceramic thin disk. Several elongated higher order transverse modes of a Hermite-Gaussian beam were observed when a straightline-shaped gain region was created by using a diode laser output from an optical fiber. An orthogonally crossing pair of straight-line-shaped gain regions created with an additional optical fiber output resulted in the generation of a doughnut-shaped Laguerre-Gaussian beam. This implies that easy and quick switching of Hermite-Gaussian and Laguerre-Gaussian beams is possible without mechanical handling.
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