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Proceedings Paper

Improvements to long-pulse system performance and operational efficiency on OMEGA EP
Author(s): M. J. Guardalben; L. J. Waxer
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Paper Abstract

OMEGA EP is a petawatt-class, Nd-doped phosphate glass laser system that can be operated in both 1053-nm, short-pulse (<1- to 100-ps) and 351-nm, long-pulse (1- to 10-ns) regimes. It was completed in FY08 and began user shots in FY09 during which 350 target shots were conducted for 30 principal investigators. As of the start of FY11, over 1000 target shots have been performed. The beamline architecture consists of 40-cm, single-segment disk amplifiers in a multipass configuration to provide the necessary gain and resulting IR energy. For long-pulse operation, type-I/type-II frequency-conversion crystals are used to convert the 1053-nm fundamental wavelength to its third harmonic. An important operational goal of the Omega EP Laser Facility is to provide principal investigators with maximum UV energy on target, while maintaining UV peak fluences within an acceptable margin for safe operation. To optimize the long-pulse, on-target energy of OMEGA EP, we have pursued a threefold effort: (1) Improve the laser-induced damage threshold of beam-transport optics; (2) improve the near-field beam profile; and (3) develop simulation tools to use during shot operations that provide rapid prediction of laser-system performance. These simulation tools predict the UV near-field beam-fluence distribution and on-target energy based on measurements of the inputs to the main amplifiers and are regularly used during shot operations. They have streamlined daily system qualification, making it possible for UV energy to be maximized within current system constraints.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 February 2011
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 7916, High Power Lasers for Fusion Research, 79160G (18 February 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.875574
Show Author Affiliations
M. J. Guardalben, Univ. of Rochester (United States)
L. J. Waxer, Univ. of Rochester (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7916:
High Power Lasers for Fusion Research
Abdul A. S. Awwal; A. Mike Dunne; Hiroshi Azechi; Brian E. Kruschwitz, Editor(s)

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