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Proceedings Paper

COMBINE*: An integrated opto-mechanical tool for laser performance modeling
Author(s): M. Rehak; J. M. Di Nicola
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Paper Abstract

Accurate modeling of thermal, mechanical and optical processes is important for achieving reliable, high-performance high energy lasers such as those at the National Ignition Facility [1] (NIF). The need for this capability is even more critical for high average power, high repetition rate applications. Modeling the effects of stresses and temperature fields on optical properties allows for optimal design of optical components and more generally of the architecture of the laser system itself. Stresses change the indices of refractions and induce inhomogeneities and anisotropy. We present a modern, integrated analysis tool that efficiently produces reliable results that are used in our laser propagation tools such as VBL [5]. COMBINE is built on and supplants the existing legacy tools developed for the previous generations of lasers at LLNL but also uses commercially available mechanical finite element codes ANSYS or COMSOL (including computational fluid dynamics). The COMBINE code computes birefringence and wave front distortions due to mechanical stresses on lenses and slabs of arbitrary geometry. The stresses calculated typically originate from mounting support, vacuum load, gravity, heat absorption and/or attending cooling. Of particular importance are the depolarization and detuning effects of nonlinear crystals due to thermal loading. Results are given in the form of Jones matrices, depolarization maps and wave front distributions. An incremental evaluation of Jones matrices and ray propagation in a 3D mesh with a stress and temperature field is performed. Wavefront and depolarization maps are available at the optical aperture and at slices within the optical element. The suite is validated, user friendly, supported, documented and amenable to collaborative development. * COMBINE stands for Code for Opto-Mechanical Birefringence Integrated Numerical Evaluations.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 February 2015
PDF: 13 pages
Proc. SPIE 9345, High Power Lasers for Fusion Research III, 93450K (26 February 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2080403
Show Author Affiliations
M. Rehak, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
J. M. Di Nicola, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9345:
High Power Lasers for Fusion Research III
Abdul A. S. Awwal; Monya A. Lane, Editor(s)

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