An investigation into the interaction of a fiber deliverable, long pulse, xenon chloride (308 nm) excimer laser with hard biotissue has been carried out. The laser produces pulses of 200+ ns as opposed to around 10 - 20 ns for most of the previously reported data. The threshold of ablation and the maximum ablation depth (AD) in human molar dentine were found to be 0.30 +/- 0.05 J/cm2 and 1.57 +/- 0.04 micrometer/pulse respectively. The threshold for enamel was found to be above the achievable fluence with the available optics. The ablation process was investigated as a function of fluence (approximately 0.1 - 6 J/cm2), pulse repetition rate (PRR) (5 - 25 Hz) and number of pulses (500 - 4000). Each variable was altered independently of the other two. At a constant number of pulses, ablation depth per pulse was found to increase linearly as a function of fluence, up to a saturation fluence of approximately 4 J/cm2. Variation of the PRR alone was found to affect both the ablation threshold and the AD. For constant fluence and PRR, AD decreases non- linearly with an increasing number of pulses. This could be because at high pulse numbers the craters are deep, the walls of the crater absorb more energy and as it is increasingly difficult for the debris to escape, shielding of the tissue occurs. Shielding may also be due to absorption in a luminescent plume. At high fluence and PRR, sharp holes were formed in the dentine although charring was sometimes found around the edges. High PRR also induced considerable mechanical damage.