17 October 2012 Thermo-Optical (TOP) analysis of transmissive elements for laser systems
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Increasing laser beam qualities make thermal lensing again a hot topic and demand for a thermo-optical simulation for improving classical ray tracing and enabling optimization possibilities for thermally aberrated optical systems. This paper summarizes the approach for coupling FEM and ray tracing using a weighted least squares approximation algorithm and demonstrates the abilities of the coupled simulation in the case of a CO2 laser system for polishing of glass and plastics. It can be demonstrated that the algorithm can be used for the analysis of higher order aberrations, since the application contains a Gaussian to top-hat conversion lens group which suffers from thermal gradients. Finally, the benefits and further developments of analyzing thermal gradients in optical simulation are being discussed.
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Alexander Gatej, Alexander Gatej, Annika Richmann, Annika Richmann, Oliver Pütsch, Oliver Pütsch, Peter Loosen, Peter Loosen, } "Thermo-Optical (TOP) analysis of transmissive elements for laser systems", Proc. SPIE 8490, Laser Beam Shaping XIII, 84900C (17 October 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.929213; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.929213

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