Proceedings PaperTheoretical And Experimental Investigations On The Plasma Of A CO2 High Power Laser
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The CO2 high power laser is increasingly used in material processing. This application of the laser has to meet some requirements: at one hand the laser is a tool free of wastage, but at the other hand is to guarantee that the properties of that tool are constant in time. Therefore power, geometry and mode of the beam have to be stable over long intervalls, even if the laser is used in rough industrial environment. Otherwise laser material processing would not be competitive. The beam quality is affected by all components of the laser - by the CO2 plasma and its IR - amplification, by the resonator which at last generates the beam by optical feedback, and also by the electric power supply whose effects on the plasma may be measured at the laser beam. A transversal flow laser has been developed at the Technical University of Vienna in cooperation with VOest-Alpine AG, Linz (Austria). This laser produces 1 kW of beam power with unfolded resonator. It was subject to investigations presented in this paper.