doi: 10.17586/2226-1494-2015-15-6-1000-1007


PERFORMANCE OPTIMIZATION OF THE DIODE-PUMPED SOLID-STATE LASER FOR SPACE APPLICATIONS

D. A. Arkhipov, V. I. Venglyk, V. A. Derevyanko, M. S. Egorov, Y. A. Rezunkov, V. V. Stepanov


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For citation: Arkhipov D.A., Venglyuk V.I., Derevyanko V.A., Egorov M.S., Rezunkov Yu.A., Stepanov V.V. Performance optimization of the diode-pumped solid-state laser for space applications. Scientific and Technical Journal of Information Technologies, Mechanics and Optics, 2015, vol. 15, no. 6, pp. 1000–-1007.

Abstract
Subject of Research. Thermophysical and optical techniques of parameter regulation for diode pumped solid-state laser are studied as applied to space laser communication and laser ranging lines. Methods. The investigations are carried out on the base of the original design of diode pumped solid-state laser module that includes the following: Nd:YAG slab element, diode pumped by 400W QCW produced by NORTHROP GRUMMAN; two-pass unstable resonator with rotation of the laser beam aperture about its axis through 1800; the output mirror of the resonator with a variable reflection coefficient; hyperthermal conductive plates for thermal stabilization of the laser diode generation modes. The presence of thermal conductive plates excludes conventional running water systems applied as cooling systems for solid-state laser components. The diodes
temperature stabilization is achieved by applying the algorithm of pulse-width modulation of power of auxiliary electric heaters. To compensate for non-stationary thermal distortions of the slab refractive index, the laser resonator scheme comprises a prism reflector with an apex angle of 1200. Narrow sides of the prism are covered with reflective coating, and its wide side is sprayed with antireflection coating. The beam aperture is turned around its axis through 1800 because of triple reflection of the beam inside the prism. The turning procedure leads to compensating for the output beam phase distortions in view of symmetric character of the aberrations of slab refractive index. To suppress parasitic oscillations inside the slab, dielectric coatings of wide sides of the slab are used. Main Results. We have demonstrated theoretically and experimentally that the usage of hyperthermal conductive plates together with the algorithm of pulse-width modulation provides stabilizing of the diode substrate temperature accurate within ± 0.1 °С and smoothing the temperature distribution along the plate surface accurate within 1 °С. Optical schematic diagram of the laser resonator keeps the laser beam divergence not exceeding a diffraction limit more than twice under a light pump power of 100 W. We have also shown that to increase the lasing efficiency, slab multilayer dielectric coatings made of SiO2 и ZrO2 should be used. Practical Relevance. We have proposed original design of the diode pumped solid-state laser module optimizing the generation and pump modes of solid-state lasers by the temperature stabilization technique for laser diode array and by compensation of the slab aberrations. The techniques are also applicable under space conditions; that is an important factor at developing the space-based lasers.

Keywords: solid-state laser, diode pumping, slab, unstable resonator, hyperthermoconductive plate, parasitic oscillation.

Acknowledgements. We ought to thank Prof. L.A. Gubanova from ITMO University (Saint Petersburg) for useful discussions on the paper subject and for recommendations on optical coating of the laser slab.

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