Efficient in-band diode-pumped Q-switched solid state laser for methane detection

Award Information
Agency:
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$124,969.00
Award Year:
2012
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
NNX12CE18P
Award Id:
n/a
Agency Tracking Number:
115610
Solicitation Year:
2011
Solicitation Topic Code:
S1.01
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
NJ, Cranbury, NJ, 08512-3509
Hubzone Owned:
N
Minority Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
170161595
Principal Investigator:
Igor Kudryashov
Principal Investigator
(609) 495-3003
ikudryashov@princetonlightwave.com
Business Contact:
Mark Itzler
Business Official
(609) 495-2551
mitzler@princetonlightwave.com
Research Institute:
Stub




Abstract
Growing interest in precise measurements of methane concentration and distribution in the Earth's atmosphere is stimulating efforts to develop LIDAR systems in the spectral region of 1.65 um utilizing Path Differential Absorption techniques. The key element of such systems is a high energy optical source with good beam properties operating in the vicinity of a methane absorption line. In-band pumping Q-switched solid state lasers (SSLs) based on Er-doped active media are good candidates for this required optical source. The in-band pumping of SSLs allows for shifting a significant portion of the system thermal load from the gain medium to the pump diodes, thus greatly reducing gain medium thermal distortions deleterious to SSL power scaling with high beam quality. As the goal of this SBIR program, we propose to develop an efficient Q-switched SSL with pulse energy>1 mJ at 1000 Hz repetition rate with in-band laser diode pumping operating at a wavelength of 1651 nm well-matched to the principle absorption band used for the detection of methane in the Earth's atmosphere. Based on gallium garnet gain media, this SSL will also provide sufficient tunability for DIAL techniques. We will leverage legacy work carried out at PLI in the development of high energy Q-switched Er:YAG SSLs with in-band laser diode pumping, as well as an excellent legacy in the design and manufacturing of the pump laser diodes themselves.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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