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Issue 47, 2014
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Multilayered YAG-Yb:YAG ceramics: manufacture and laser performance

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Thermal effects in transparent laser crystals and ceramics are generally an unwanted consequence of the pumping process: temperature gradients give rise to an unevenly distributed refractive index variation and a distortion of the optical surfaces crossed by the laser beam (thermal lens); birefringence due to thermomechanical stress can cause depolarization losses; and absorption from the ground level usually increases with temperature in quasi-three-level systems. All these effects can seriously impair laser performance, especially in high-power devices. Layered structures with a tailored modulation of the doping level can be used to reduce the peak temperature, the temperature gradients and also the thermally induced deformation of the laser material, thus mitigating the overall thermal effects. In the present work, structures comprising two and three layers of different compositions (pure YAG/10 at% Yb:YAG and pure YAG/10 at% Yb:YAG/pure YAG) were designed with a view to control deformation and stresses, and to reduce the thermal lensing effect. The multilayered samples were assembled by linear and cold isostatic pressing, and co-sintered under a high vacuum in a clean-atmosphere furnace. The microstructure of the layered samples obtained was characterized by FEG SEM, ESEM and TEM. The Yb diffusion profile across the doped/undoped interface was identified and related to the laser's output power. An internal optical transmittance up to 96% was obtained. A laser output power up to 5 W, with a slope efficiency as high as 74.3%, was also achieved.

Graphical abstract: Multilayered YAG-Yb:YAG ceramics: manufacture and laser performance

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Publication details

The article was received on 15 Jul 2014, accepted on 01 Oct 2014 and first published on 01 Oct 2014

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C4TC01544D
Citation: J. Mater. Chem. C, 2014,2, 10138-10148
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    Multilayered YAG-Yb:YAG ceramics: manufacture and laser performance

    L. Esposito, J. Hostaša, A. Piancastelli, G. Toci, D. Alderighi, M. Vannini, T. Epicier, A. Malchère, G. Alombert-Goget and G. Boulon, J. Mater. Chem. C, 2014, 2, 10138
    DOI: 10.1039/C4TC01544D

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