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23 March 2007 Transmission of high Erbium:YAG laser pulse energies through germanium oxide trunk fibers with sapphire tips
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Endoscopic applications of the Erbium:YAG laser have been limited due to the lack of a suitable optical fiber delivery system. This study compares the transmission of Er:YAG laser radiation through germanium oxide trunk fibers with silica or sapphire fiber tips for potential use in endoscopic tissue ablation. Er:YAG laser radiation with a wavelength of 2.94 &mgr;m, pulse length of 300 &mgr;s, pulse energies of 5-1360 mJ, and pulse rates of 3-10 Hz, was delivered through 1-m-long germanium oxide fibers with either 1-cm-long, 550-&mgr;m-diameter silica or sapphire tips. Transmission through the germanium oxide / sapphire fibers measured 65 + 5 % compared with 55 + 4 % for the germanium oxide / silica fibers (P < 0.05). The damage threshold for the hybrid fibers averaged 309 + 44 mJ and 126 + 43 mJ, respectively (n = 7 fibers each) (P < 0.05). Maximum pulse energies transmitted through the fibers were 700 mJ and 220 mJ, respectively. Improved index-matching of the trunk fiber and fiber tip at 2.94 &mgr;m resulted in higher transmission and damage thresholds for the germanium oxide / sapphire fibers. The germanium oxide / sapphire fiber may represent a promising mid-IR optical fiber delivery system for use in endoscopic applications of the Er:YAG laser requiring a flexible, biocompatible, and robust fiber delivery system for contact tissue ablation.
© (2007) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Travis J. Polletto, Anthony K. Ngo, Alexei Tchapyjnikov, Ken Levin, Danh Tran, and Nathaniel M. Fried "Transmission of high Erbium:YAG laser pulse energies through germanium oxide trunk fibers with sapphire tips", Proc. SPIE 6424, Photonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics III, 642416 (23 March 2007);

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