12 April 2005 Measurement techniques for laser parameters relevant to materials processing
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Abstract
Many micromachining operations, particularly in the electronics sector, utilize pulsed solid-state UV lasers. These processes demand high levels of stability, as the yield and quality relate directly to the repeatability of each laser pulse. Critical stability issues arise with single-pulse processes (e.g. repair), situations requiring bursts of pulses (e.g. drilling), and continuous pulsing applications (e.g. cutting). To realize optimal stability specific design choices must be made, certain transient problems must be solved, and pulse energy measurements must be standardized. Solid-state UV lasers originate as infrared lasers, and nonlinear optics converts the infrared to the UV. This conversion introduces instability. Performing the conversion within the infrared laser cavity suppresses the instability, relative to performing the conversion outside of the laser cavity. We explain this phenomenon. Ideally, a versatile and stable solid-state laser can generate pulses in many formats. Thermal effects tend to prevent this versatile ideal, resulting in transient problems (unstable pulse trains), or less than optimal performance when the laser is pulsing continuously. Many methods of measuring pulse energy exist. Each method can produce surprisingly different results. We compare various techniques, discuss their limitations, and suggest an easily implemented pulse energy stability measurement.
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Mark Alan Arbore, Mark Alan Arbore, David Balsley, David Balsley, James Morehead, James Morehead, Frank Adams, Frank Adams, Werner Wiechmann, Werner Wiechmann, Jeffrey Kmetec, Jeffrey Kmetec, Yidong Zhou, Yidong Zhou, William M. Grossman, William M. Grossman, } "Measurement techniques for laser parameters relevant to materials processing", Proc. SPIE 5713, Photon Processing in Microelectronics and Photonics IV, (12 April 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.588710; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.588710
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