SBIR/STTR Phase I: Self-Imaging Fibers for High Power Optical Beams
Small Business Information
655 Aspen Ridge Drive, Lafayette, CO, 80026
AbstractThis Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I Project will investigate self-imaging in fiber structures, and determine feasibility of developing two classes of novel device: highly efficient, near diffraction-limited rare earth ion-doped glass lasers and amplifiers, and high power/energy fibers for transport, routing and coupling of diffraction-limited beams. Conventional single mode fiber lasers can deliver similar performance at low power/ energy, but higher power systems require larger fiber apertures, leading to multi spatial mode propagation. Self-imaging accesses a new operating regime for guided wave devices, enabling diffraction-limited power scaling of lasers and beam-transport fibers. In comparison, bulk lasers are less efficient, and more susceptible to thermo-optic distortions. The self-imaging proof-of-concept has been demonstrated in a 16W planar waveguide laser fabricated from diffusion-bonded crystals. However, that approach is not well suited to fabricating 2-dimensional waveguides where 4 separate polishing/bonding steps are needed. Application of this work would be the design and development of optimized waveguides for the telecommunications industry. The end product would be an integrated product with improved optical characteristics
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