[OPTICAL REVIEW Vol. 13, No. 3 (2006) 119-128]
© 2006 The Optical Society of Japan

Beam Combination using Stimulated Brillouin Scattering for the Ultimate High Power-Energy Laser System Operating at High Repetition Rate over 10 Hz for Laser Fusion Driver

Hong Jin KONG, Seong Ku LEE, Jin Woo YOON and Du Hyun BEAK

Department of Physics, KAIST, Guseong-dong, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon 305-701, Korea

(Received March 15, 2006; Accepted April 11, 2006)

After the laser was invented in 1960, a phase conjugation mirror has been respected to be the most fantastic one for the laser resonator composition because it can compensate any distortions of the laser beams occurred by the many inhomogenuities of the laser media and optical components. Among the many phase conjugation configurations, the stimulated Brillouin scattering phase conjugation mirror is the most simple one and many researchers have tried to utilize it to develop high power/energy laser systems. For realizing a high energy/power laser system the thermal problem is the most difficult to solve, and some researchers suggested a beam combination technique to reduce the thermal load of the big laser media to many small sized ones. To accomplish the beam combination using stimulated Brillouin scattering phase conjugation mirrors (SBS-PCMs), it is necessary to lock/control the phases of the SBS-PCMs. And some researchers have developed several ways for it, but they can lock the phases of a limited number of beams overlapped at the foci less than 5, or lock the phases by back-seeding technique but it loses the phase conjugation characteristics. For realization of the laser fusion driver, it is necessary to combine more than 10 or 100 beams. And the authors have developed recently a new phase controlling/locking technique which is isolated and independent totally from other beams and it can be applied to an unlimited number of beams in principle.

Key words: beam combination, laser fusion driver, phase control, stimulated Brillouin scattering