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Proceedings Paper

Beam uniformity of flat top lasers
Author(s): Chao Chang; Larry Cramer; Don Danielson; James Norby
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Paper Abstract

Many beams that output from standard commercial lasers are multi-mode, with each mode having a different shape and width. They show an overall non-homogeneous energy distribution across the spot size. There may be satellite structures, halos and other deviations from beam uniformity. However, many scientific, industrial and medical applications require flat top spatial energy distribution, high uniformity in the plateau region, and complete absence of hot spots. Reliable standard methods for the evaluation of beam quality are of great importance. Standard methods are required for correct characterization of the laser for its intended application and for tight quality control in laser manufacturing. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has published standard procedures and definitions for this purpose. These procedures have not been widely adopted by commercial laser manufacturers. This is due to the fact that they are unreliable because an unrepresentative single-pixel value can seriously distort the result. We hereby propose a metric of beam uniformity, a way of beam profile visualization, procedures to automatically detect hot spots and beam structures, and application examples in our high energy laser production.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 March 2015
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 9343, Laser Resonators, Microresonators, and Beam Control XVII, 93430U (3 March 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2077852
Show Author Affiliations
Chao Chang, Continuum Inc. (United States)
Larry Cramer, Continuum Inc. (United States)
Don Danielson, Continuum Inc. (United States)
James Norby, Continuum Inc. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9343:
Laser Resonators, Microresonators, and Beam Control XVII
Alexis V. Kudryashov; Alan H. Paxton; Vladimir S. Ilchenko; Lutz Aschke; Kunihiko Washio, Editor(s)

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