[OPTICAL REVIEW Vol. 17, No. 3 (2010) 294-299]
© 2010 The Japan Society of Applied Physics

Development of High-Efficiency 10 kHz mJ ps Yb:YAG Laser for Industry


National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), C2, 1-1-1 Umezono, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8568, Japan
1Megaopto Co., Ltd., RIKEN-WAKO Incubation Plaza 301, 2-3-13 Minami, Wako, Saitama 351-0104, Japan

(Received September 18, 2009; Accepted January 19, 2010)

We are currently developing a high-efficiency Yb:YAG regenerative amplifier pumped by CW diode lasers. The performance of the regenerative amplifier was estimated by theoretical calculations. For the excitation process, a rate equation was numerically integrated over the repetition interval with CW pumping. For the regenerative pulse amplification process, the Frantz–Nodvik equation was applied for each pass. The result of the theoretical calculation was compared with experimental data of a 2 mJ output pulse energy at a 10 kHz repetition rate. An optical–optical conversion efficiency of 17.8% was achieved. The outline of a prototype under development for a commercial product is also mentioned.

Key words: Yb:YAG laser, short pulse, high efficiency, high energy, industry, regenerative amplifier, theoretical calculation

*E-mail address: i.matsushima@aist.go.jp