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Proceedings Paper

Beam characteristics of a large-bore copper laser with radiatively cooled plasma
Author(s): Jim J. Chang; Charles D. Boley; Mark W. Martinez; William A. Molander; Bruce E. Warner
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Paper Abstract

In a large-bore copper vapor laser (CVL), excessive gas heating at the axial region of the discharge lowers its efficiency by thermally populating the metastable lower laser levels. The associated lower gas density also lengthens the discharge field- diffusion time, leading to weaker axial pumping and undesired beam characteristics. A novel approach to circumvent this obstacle has been developed by cooling the plasma radiatively via a series of segmented metal plates (septa) placed vertically along the length of the tube. This improved tube design significantly lowers the average gas temperature and shortens the radial delay. A 27% increase in laser power was observed with the addition of septa. We have characterized the beam intensity profile, spatial and temporal pulse variation, and beam polarization through extensive laboratory measurements. A detailed computational model of the laser has been used to characterize and interpret the laboratory results.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 May 1994
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 2118, Gas, Metal Vapor, and Free-Electron Lasers and Applications, (25 May 1994); doi: 10.1117/12.176649
Show Author Affiliations
Jim J. Chang, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Charles D. Boley, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Mark W. Martinez, Martin Marietta Energy Systems (United States)
William A. Molander, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Bruce E. Warner, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2118:
Gas, Metal Vapor, and Free-Electron Lasers and Applications
Vern N. Smiley; Frank K. Tittel, Editor(s)

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