Accession Number:



Fluid Mechanical Refracting Gas Prism And Aerodynamics of E-Beam Sustained Discharge in Supersonic Flow, Both Applicable to Laser Technology

Descriptive Note:

Final rept. 1 Jan 1974-31 Oct 1978

Corporate Author:


Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



In many high power laser systems, the interaction of either electromagnetic radiation or an electric discharge with a flow system has proved an important phenomenon. Knowledge of the interaction of laser radiation and flow is required to understand the performance of aerodynamic windows and the nonlinear effects of thermal blooming, which involves significant effects caused by small energy losses of the beam. The small losses usually associated with simple refraction of light in gases may be useful and have motivated us to develop and study a unique fluid mechanical device for possible manipulation and storage of laser radiation. A low power beam of light can be deflected continuously through large angles along a curved path using the flow from a convergent-divergent nozzle sector whose throat lies on an arc of a circle. The flow devices that have been built and studied, based on this concept, have been dubbed Venus machines because of the similarity to the optical conditions predicted to exist in the atmosphere of Venus. New and more accurate transmission data is presented wherein transmission measurements in excess of 99.5 are detailed. This data permits detailed analysis of the light well and a more accurate assessment of the optimum operating conditions of the Venus Machine. jhd

Subject Categories:

  • Lasers and Masers
  • Optics

Distribution Statement: