Proceedings PaperUniform energy discharge for pulsed lasers
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The method of achieving a high energy discharge in a controlled manner with relative ease is to use a pulse forming network. The design of such networks generally uses a single inductor and capacitor. Although easy to design and implement, this practice does not provide optimum performance in all cases. For example, most laser welding applications require a uniform energy discharge within the pulse to produce a high quality weld. Analysis has shown that when the pulse forming network approximates a lumped constant transmission line a maximum flat pulse is produced with minimal degradation of the pulse rise time. This paper shows that a low pass filter ladder network composed of equal capacitors and inductors provides a flat pulse whose energy discharge becomes more uniform as the filter's order increases. This is highly favorable in achieving a producible design since all the capacitors and inductors will be of equal value. An algorithm is generated and used to calculate the coefficients for the Laplace transform of the networks. Design equations are derived for calculating the network's components for use with flashlamps. Then a computer's simulation of a network is compared to actual performance.