Its been well noted in the past that sweeping the PMC at high power leads to a distortion of the transmitted power curve. The explanation for this was coating absorption and thermo-elastic deformation of the front face of the mirrors.
Today, I did several sweeps of the PMC. I turned off its servo and tuned its PZT so that it was nearly resonating. Then I drove the NPRO via the HV driver (gain=15) with 0-150 V (its 1.1 MHz/V) to measure the PMC transmitted light. I adjusted the NPRO pump diode current from 2A on down to see if the curves have a power dependent width.
In the picasa web slideshow:
There are 3 significant differences between this measurement and the one by John linked above: its a new PMC (Rick says its the cleanest one around), the sweep is faster - since I'm using a scope instead of the ADC I feel free to drive the thing by ~70 MHz in one cycle. In principle, we could go faster, but I don't want to get into the region where we excite the PZT resonance. Doing ~100 MHz in ~30 ms should be OK. I think it may be that going this fast avoids some of the thermal distortion problems that John and others have seen in the past. On the next iteration, we should increase the modulation index for the 35.5 MHz sidebands so as to get a higher precision calibration of the sweep's range.
By eye I find that the FWHM from image #4 is 11 ms long. That corresponds to 300 mV on the input to the HV box and 15 V on the PZT and ~16.5 MHz of frequency shift. I think we expect a number more like 4-5 MHz; measurement suspicious.