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Proceedings Paper

High-efficiency UV laser for space-based wind lidar
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Paper Abstract

Lidar based measurements of clear air winds from space requires a high efficiency UV laser transmitter. We have developed a prototype of the required transmitter that uses third harmonic generation from a diode pumped Nd:YAG laser to achieve the desired UV output. Our approach uses a single-frequency Nd:YAG master oscillator/power amplifier as the primary pump source. The system is diode pumped and conductively cooled for compatibility with space-based operation. We use a variation of the ramp and fire technique to injection seed the master oscillator. The space-qualifiable electronics provide user control of the injection seeding, diode pump power, and operational modes of the laser. The 1064 nm laser transmitter has been demonstrated to achieve a true system level wall plug efficiency of 6.4% for a q-switched output power of 44 W at 50 Hz. We use high efficiency doubling and sum frequency mixing of the 1064 nm pump to generate 24 W of 355 nm output. This result implies a third harmonic optical to optical generation efficiency of 55% and a system level efficiency of 3.5%. In this paper we report on the design and testing of this laser transmitter.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 May 2007
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 6555, Sensors and Systems for Space Applications, 655504 (3 May 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.720251
Show Author Affiliations
Floyd E. Hovis, Fibertek, Inc. (United States)
Jinxue Wang, Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6555:
Sensors and Systems for Space Applications
Richard T. Howard; Robert D. Richards, Editor(s)

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