Neodymium Laser Glass Improvement Program.
Final rept. 1 May 62-1 Mar 71,
AMERICAN OPTICAL CORP SOUTHBRIDGE MA RESEARCH DIV
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This final report describes work carried out over a nine year period to improve the properties and performance of Nd laser glass. One of the first tasks was the reduction of absorption at 1.06 micron to a 0.1-0.2cm level by the identification and elimination of such impurities as iron. Fluorescent lifetime was investigated 1 as a function of host glass composition to provide data on tbe range of values attainable for this important parameter, and 2 as a function of time, temperature and Nd2O3 concentration to provide insight into the nature of the Nd3 ion site and its effect on emission. The degree of discoloration due to solarization by the pump source and its effect on laser performance was investigated as a function of glass composition. Theory was evolved for the design of an athermal laser material based on the hypothesis that thermally induced optical distortion resulting from thermal expansion and associated stress optical effects can be counterbalanced by direct thermally induced index changes if proper glass composition and cavity design are chosen. Descriptions are given of tbe measuring techniques, which are unique in many cases, for determining coefficients of the above temperature and pressure effects as a function of glass composition. Several compositions showed theoretically predicted and experimentally verified marked improvement over our commercial laser material.
- Lasers and Masers