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Proceedings Paper

Simulation of deleterious processes in a static-cell diode pumped alkali laser
Author(s): Benjamin Q. Oliker; John D. Haiducek; David A Hostutler; Greg A Pitz; Wolfgang Rudolph; Timothy J. Madden
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Paper Abstract

The complex interactions in a diode pumped alkali laser (DPAL) gain cell provide opportunities for multiple deleterious processes to occur. Effects that may be attributable to deleterious processes have been observed experimentally in a cesium static-cell DPAL at the United States Air Force Academy [B.V. Zhdanov, J. Sell, R.J. Knize, “Multiple laser diode array pumped Cs laser with 48 W output power,” Electronics Letters, 44, 9 (2008)]. The power output in the experiment was seen to go through a “roll-over”; the maximum power output was obtained with about 70 W of pump power, then power output decreased as the pump power was increased beyond this point. Research to determine the deleterious processes that caused this result has been done at the Air Force Research Laboratory utilizing physically detailed simulation. The simulations utilized coupled computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and optics solvers, which were three-dimensional and time-dependent. The CFD code used a cell-centered, conservative, finite-volume discretization of the integral form of the Navier-Stokes equations. It included thermal energy transport and mass conservation, which accounted for chemical reactions and state kinetics. Optical models included pumping, lasing, and fluorescence. The deleterious effects investigated were: alkali number density decrease in high temperature regions, convective flow, pressure broadening and shifting of the absorption lineshape including hyperfine structure, radiative decay, quenching, energy pooling, off-resonant absorption, Penning ionization, photoionization, radiative recombination, three-body recombination due to free electron and buffer gas collisions, ambipolar diffusion, thermal aberration, dissociative recombination, multi-photon ionization, alkali-hydrocarbon reactions, and electron impact ionization.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 February 2014
PDF: 15 pages
Proc. SPIE 8962, High Energy/Average Power Lasers and Intense Beam Applications VII, 89620B (25 February 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2045339
Show Author Affiliations
Benjamin Q. Oliker, Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. (United States)
John D. Haiducek, Univ. of Michigan (United States)
David A Hostutler, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Greg A Pitz, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Wolfgang Rudolph, University of New Mexico (United States)
Timothy J. Madden, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8962:
High Energy/Average Power Lasers and Intense Beam Applications VII
Steven J. Davis; Michael C. Heaven; J. Thomas Schriempf, Editor(s)

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