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Proceedings Paper

Nanostructure formation on lithium niobate surfaces by high-repetition rate sub-15-fs near-infrared laser pulses
Author(s): Martin Straub; Benjamin Weigand; Karsten König
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Paper Abstract

Due to its electro-optical, acousto-optical, ferroelectric, piezoelectric and nonlinear-optical properties lithium niobate is a material of high technological relevance. Thus, patterning of LiNbO3 surfaces by laser light may significantly influence the performance of micro-optical devices made of this material. Here, we report on the generation of self-organized nanostructures on surfaces of unpoled LiNbO3 crystals using tightly focused sub-15 fs pulsed Ti:Sapphire laser light (centre wavelength 800 nm, bandwidth 120 nm, repetition rate 85 MHz) at sub-nanojoule pulse energies. With the LiNbO3 surface immersed in oil intensities close to the ablation threshold resulted in the formation of shallow ripples of 5 - 25 nm in height appearing at a periodicity of approximately 220 nm. The ripples were generated by local melting and resolidification of LiNbO3 involving minor admixture of hydrocarbons. At intensities well beyond the ablation threshold the LiNbO3 surfaces were patterned densely with tiny cones of 100 - 500 nm in height featuring diameters of a few hundred nanometers. Moreover, lines scanned inside the LiNbO3 crystals resulted in refractive index changes along the laser traces. In contrast, with the LiNbO3 surface in air or water, ablation was not observed even at prolonged exposure due to aberrations of the focal spot.

Paper Details

Date Published: 16 February 2012
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 8243, Laser Applications in Microelectronic and Optoelectronic Manufacturing (LAMOM) XVII, 82431B (16 February 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.906597
Show Author Affiliations
Martin Straub, Saarland Univ. (Germany)
Benjamin Weigand, Saarland Univ. (Germany)
Karsten König, Saarland Univ. (Germany)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8243:
Laser Applications in Microelectronic and Optoelectronic Manufacturing (LAMOM) XVII
Guido Hennig; Xianfan Xu; Bo Gu; Yoshiki Nakata, Editor(s)

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