In order to achieve a thermally stable diode laser system based on high power diode laser bars, actively cooled heatsinks in form of micro channel heat sinks (MCHS) are used to face the power loss density of 106 W/m2 while requiring a minimum device volume. At identical junction temperature, passively cooled diode lasers are usually lower in power and the device volume is much higher due to the heat flux spreading design of passive heatsinks.
However, as a matter of principle, the cooling with MCHS sinks requires a sealing between the heat sink itself and the system around. This sealing is usually achieved by o-rings, what can never avoid the transfer of vapor from the cooling system into the vicinity of the diode laser. Extreme requirements on availability, which lead to corresponding lifetime requirements, like in telecom applications, already require passively cooled diode lasers without any water in the inner system boundaries.
For applications not requiring the extreme compact design volume of actively cooled diode lasers but requiring extreme lifetime or a minimum outlay on the periphery, we started looking into passively cooled diode laser stacks.
To achieve a minimized temperature rise in the junction, we already developed a new copper-based heat sink, spreading the power loss in an optimized manner.
Based on this heatsink, we started developing a heat exchanger with a low thermal resistance while keeping the water out of the inner system boundaries. The thermal resistance is low enough to run up to 12 passively cooled diode lasers on a low ambient temperature with a minimum of periphery requirements.