20 February 2018 Lasers with intra-cavity phase elements
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Abstract
Conventional laser resonators yield multimodal output, especially at high powers and short cavity lengths. Since highorder modes exhibit large divergence, it is desirable to suppress them to improve laser quality. Traditionally, such modal discriminations can be achieved by simple apertures that provide absorptive loss for large diameter modes, while allowing the lower orders, such as the fundamental Gaussian, to pass through. However, modal discrimination may not be sufficient for short-cavity lasers, resulting in multimodal operation as well as power loss and overheating in the absorptive part of the aperture.

In research to improve laser mode control with minimal energy loss, systematic experiments have been executed using phase-only elements. These were composed of an intra-cavity step function and a diffractive out-coupler made of a computer-generated hologram. The platform was a 15-cm long solid-state laser that employs a neodymium-doped yttrium orthovanadate crystal rod, producing 1064 nm multimodal laser output. The intra-cavity phase elements (PEs) were shown to be highly effective in obtaining beams with reduced M-squared values and increased output powers, yielding improved values of radiance. The utilization of more sophisticated diffractive elements is promising for more difficult laser systems.
Conference Presentation
© (2018) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
A. Alkan Gulses, Russell Kurtz, Gabriel Islas, Igor Anisimov, "Lasers with intra-cavity phase elements", Proc. SPIE 10513, Components and Packaging for Laser Systems IV, 1051318 (20 February 2018); doi: 10.1117/12.2291829; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2291829
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