Technique for Increasing Laser Energy on Target.
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY WASHINGTON DC
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The propagation of a high power laser beam either cw or pulsed through the atmosphere is dependent on many factors. These factors include the laser phase distributions, laser amplitude distribution, laser wavelength, atmospheric turbulence, molecular absorption, molecular scattering, aerosol absorption, and aerosol scattering. If the power at the laser is sufficiently low such that no substantial heating of the atmosphere results, the power density at the target is proportional to the laser power and one is in the linear regime. However, if substantial heating of the atmosphere occurs due to absorption of the laser energy by the atmosphere, an increase in the laser power beyond a certain critical value can actually result in a decrease in the power density at the target and one is in the nonlinear regime. This particular nonlinear effect is called thermal blooming. It is the object of this invention to supply a high energy system which overcomes the difficulties of previous lasers to supply more energy on the target.
- Lasers and Masers