Mannasa and Unni and I looked at the RF driver for the AOM. It was fine.
With the ALC input left unconnected, with the power supply set to +28V, it was drawing 0.56 A.
By adjusting the modulation input we were able to get 1.1 Vrms into the scope (terminated at 50 Ohms) after going through 2 10dB attenuators. 11 Vrms into 50 Ohms is 33.8 dBm ~ 2W.
The RF power trimpot on the front of the driver is now adjusted so that -0.31 to 0.69 V takes the driver output from off to 2W output at 80 MHz.
The previous distorted signal that Jan and Manasa saw was at a level of ~100 mVrms, which is ~0.5 mW of power. At this tiny drive level, the internal amplifier is not linear and is mostly putting out a signal at ~160 MHz.
We checked by putting a square wave into the modulation input that the RF power from the driver would indeed shut off with a time scale of ~20 ns. Manasa will add a picture to this entry. We are ready now to calibrate the transmitted power of the AOM v. the modulation input voltage and then to measure the step time of the AOM.
Remember: do NOT believe the spec sheet of whatever PD you are using. All commercial PDs are slower than they advertise. In order to measure a <1 us step time you must use a PD with a >50 MHz 'bandwidth'.