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Proceedings Paper

Synchronized videography of plasma plume expansion during femtosecond laser ablation
Author(s): Steven Paolasini; Anne Kietzig
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Paper Abstract

Femtosecond lasers are gaining industrial interest for surface patterning and structuring because of the reduced heat effects to the surrounding material, resulting in a good quality product with a high aspect ratio. Analysis of the plasma plume generated during ablation can provide useful information about the laser-material interactions and thereby the quality of the resulting surface patterns. As a low-cost alternative to rather complicated ICCD camera setups, presented here is an approach based on filming the laser machining process with a high speed camera and tuning the frame rate of the camera to slightly lower than the laser pulse frequency. The delay in frequency between the laser and camera results in frames taken from sequential pulses. Each frame represents a later phase of plume expansion although taken from different pulses. Assuming equal plume evolution processes from pulse to pulse, the sequence of images obtained completes a plume expansion video. To test the assumption of homogeneity between sequential plumes, the camera can be tuned to the frequency of the laser, as to capture consecutive plumes at the same phase in their evolution. This approach enables a relatively low-cost, high resolution visualization of plasma plume evolution suitable for industrial micromachining applications with femtosecond lasers. Using this approach we illustrate differences in plume expansion at the example of machining homogeneous surface patterns in different liquid and gaseous processing environments.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 March 2014
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 8967, Laser Applications in Microelectronic and Optoelectronic Manufacturing (LAMOM) XIX, 896710 (6 March 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2040032
Show Author Affiliations
Steven Paolasini, McGill Univ. (Canada)
Anne Kietzig, McGill Univ. (Canada)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8967:
Laser Applications in Microelectronic and Optoelectronic Manufacturing (LAMOM) XIX
Yoshiki Nakata; Xianfan Xu; Stephan Roth; Beat Neuenschwander, Editor(s)

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