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Picosecond pulses have been generated by an optically pumped GaAs laser. The laser consisted of a Zn‐doped single‐crystal GaAs ribbon whisker 1–2 μm thick sandwiched between highly reflecting dielectric mirrors, thus forming a cavity 5–7 μm long, with a round‐trip time of 0.08 ps. Output pulses as short as 1 ps were measured by means of a sum‐frequency cross correlation technique.