A typical evidence of saturable absorption (SA) is a significant deterioration of the absorptive properties of the optically non-linear material with increasing the incident pulse intensity. The following two factors may contribute to the absorption drop: the excited states of the material have very long life times and the excited state absorption are much smaller than the ground state absorption. Indeed, in the case of high incident intensity, the ground state will be quickly depleted and will not be repopulated which will lead to a drop in absorption as the excited state absorption cannot match the same level of absorption as the ground state absorption produces.

See also: Reversible saturable absorption, Energy level, Energy level diagram, Single-photon absorption, Two-photon absorption, Three-photon absorption, Relaxation

SimphoSOFT logo SimphoSOFT® supports simulation of saturable absorption. User can define an unlimited number of energy levels and absorption transitions (from the ground as well as excited states).

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