27 April 2010 A novel high-brightness broadband light-source technology from the VUV to the IR
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Abstract
A novel technology has been developed which enables high-brightness, broadband light output from the VUV to the IR spectral regions. A focused laser is used to sustain a high-pressure xenon discharge inside a bulb, creating a smaller, hotter discharge than can be obtained by using an electrically-driven discharge. This allows for continuous output down to 120 nm wavelength and into the infrared. Application areas include hyperspectral imaging, standoff detection, surveillance, bioanalytical instrumentation, microscopy, and materials studies. Laser-driven optical discharges were first investigated over 30 years ago, providing the initial technical understanding of such discharges. However it took the convergence of two separate elements - the availability of low-cost, high-efficiency CW diode lasers; and a market need for high-brightness, broadband light source - to provide the impetus for further development in this area. Using near-IR CW diode lasers at power levels from 15 W to over 2000 W, we have generated high-pressure xenon discharges having temperatures as high as 10,000 C. The optical brightness of these discharges can be over an order of magnitude higher than those obtainable from the brightest xenon arc lamps, and can be several orders of magnitude brighter than deuterium lamps. Results from modeling of these discharges as well as experimental measurements will be presented.
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Stephen Horne, Don Smith, Matthew Besen, Matthew Partlow, Daniil Stolyarov, Huiling Zhu, William Holber, "A novel high-brightness broadband light-source technology from the VUV to the IR", Proc. SPIE 7680, Next-Generation Spectroscopic Technologies III, 76800L (27 April 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.850269; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.850269
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