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20 February 2017 Analysis of the emission characteristics of diode lasers by their wavefront structure
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In recent years wavefront measurements using a Shack-Hartmann Sensor became a fast and easy way to analyze the change of laser beam characteristics over a wide range of parameters. This method is well known for nearly Gaussian laser beams while the wavefront analysis of broadarea semiconductor lasers is still an open field of current research. Detailed analysis of the wavefront gives an additional path to get insight into the modal composition of semiconductor lasers, which has a dominant impact on the output parameters of the devices. For our investigations we utilize lasers based on the material system of GaAs emitting light in the near infrared. These types of laser emit typically more than one optical mode. The composition of these modal structures is highly affected by thermal and electric effects inside the active medium. By using a simulation software the intensity distribution at various diode currents can be associated with an assembly of Hermite Gaussian modes and thus gives insight into the basic modal structure. Additionally the change of modal composition can be recorded within the wavefront deflection. This delivers an extra track of information to the light emission. The aim of our research is to associate the wavefront with the modal structure gained by measuring the intensity distribution under changing working conditions. Furthermore we use a lens system to receive a magnified image of the beam and investigate the spatial evolution of the intensity and wavefront distribution of the laser emission along the propagating axis.
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Inga-Maria Eichentopf and Martin Reufer "Analysis of the emission characteristics of diode lasers by their wavefront structure", Proc. SPIE 10090, Laser Resonators, Microresonators, and Beam Control XIX, 100901O (20 February 2017);

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