Morgan Advanced Materials unveils new high-absorption glaze for Q-switched IR lasers

Aug. 8, 2014
Morgan Advanced Materials (Windsor, England; LON: MGAM) has introduced a new, high-absorption samarium oxide glaze developed for high-energy pulsed Q-switching infrared-laser applications.
High-absorption samarium oxide glaze is designed to be used with alumina-based ceramic laser reflectors (Image: Morgan Advanced Materials)

Morgan Advanced Materials (Windsor, England; LON: MGAM) has introduced a new, high-absorption samarium oxide glaze developed for high-energy pulsed Q-switched infrared-laser applications. The samarium glaze absorbs radiation at the Nd:YAG lasing wavelength of 1064 nm, as well as at its further transitions near 940, 1120, 1320, and 1440 nm. The glaze is designed to be applied to an Nd:YAG laser's pump-cavity material.

Suppresses decay-inducing reflections
Without such a glaze, significant amount of fluorescent radiation at the lasing wavelength escapes laterally from the laser rod into the surrounding pumping cavity. Absorbing this radiation prevents it from being reflected back into the laser rod; such reflections can stimulate decay from the upper laser transition level, thereby limiting the number of excited ions which can occupy that level. By preventing this decay, the maximum output energy obtained from the laser is increased.

Morgan formulates the samarium oxide glaze through the controlled addition of dopant to create the desired reflectance properties. The introduction of the samarium glaze by Morgan Advanced Materials means that the company is now offering three grades of glaze for laser systems. "The new glaze perfectly complements our existing yellow glaze -- which reduces laser-cavity temperatures by absorbing extremely low wavelengths, meaning less cooling fluid needs to be used -- as well as our clear glaze, which seals ceramic reflectors against the ingress of cooling fluid," says Yannick Galais of Morgan.

Applying the glaze to Morgan's Sintox AL laser pump cavity material produces the high diffuse reflectivity required to achieve uniform illumination of the laser rod surface, according to Morgan. Providing typically 98% reflectance in the desired wavelength range, the new samarium oxide glaze matches yellow (GSY) and clear (GSO) glazes between 700 and 900 nm. The optimum reflectance capability across the range of three glazes now spans wavelengths of around 580 nm up to 2000 nm.

Aimed at industrial metal-cutting
"As diode laser technology becomes more specialized, we continually evaluate our glaze formulations, in partnership with leading laser manufacturers, to improve the reliability of new equipment," says Galais. "Our samarium oxide glaze improves performance in the specified wavelength range and is suitable for high-energy, niche applications such as industrial metal cutting."

Morgan's laser reflectors are produced from alumina-based ceramic; their high strength, good thermal conductivity, and excellent dimensional and electrical stability at all operating temperatures provide a cost-effective alternative to metal-coated reflectors, according to Morgan.

For more info, see http://www.morgantechnicalceramics.com/laserreflectors

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