Laser beam quality is more complicated and subtle than is usually assumed, a fact that has caused no end of frustration and misunderstanding between laser manufacturers, users, and acquirers. Laser Beam Quality Metrics guides the reader through the subtleties of laser beam quality analysis and requirements synthesis, arming the reader with the tools to understand beam quality specifications and to write custom specifications that are traceable to the intended application.
The book is geared toward engineers and laser physicists involved in the development of laser-based systems, especially laser systems for directed energy applications. It begins with a review of basic laser properties and moves to definitions and implications of the various standard beam quality metrics such as M2, power in the bucket, brightness, beam parameter product, and Strehl ratio. The practical aspects of beam metrology, which have not been sufficiently addressed in the literature, are amply covered here.
For those who are only interested in measuring Gaussian beams from commercial lasers, a reading of Chapter 1, Chapter 2 “What Your Laser Beam Analyzer Manual Didn’t Tell You,” and the first three sections of Chapter 6 “Cautionary Tales” will be sufficient. For those working in more off-the-map fields such as unique lasers, unstable resonators, multikilowatt lasers, MOPAs, or requirements generation and development, a reading of the entire text is recommended.