'World record power' achieved by fibre laser

23 June 2003 CLEO-Europe, Munich, Lightwave Europe -- SPI (Southampton Photonics, Inc.) and the Optoelectronics Research Centre (ORC), University of Southampton, UK, have demonstrated over 600-W from a single fibre laser.

Jun 23rd, 2003

23 June 2003 CLEO-Europe, Munich, Lightwave Europe--SPI (Southampton Photonics, Inc.) and the Optoelectronics Research Centre (ORC), University of Southampton, UK, have demonstrated over 600-W from a single fibre laser.

These results, which the team believes to be the highest powers reported to date with a single fibre gain module, demonstrate that cladding-pumped fibre lasers can produce the high powers needed to compete with more traditional laser technology, in applications such as remote welding, by offering high powers which preserve beam quality. These results are included in a presentation made today by SPI at the CLEO Europe conference.

The team led by Dr Johan Nilsson produced over 600-W output power at 1090-nm from an ytterbium-doped fibre laser (YDFL). Ytterbium-doped fiber lasers are amongst the most efficient lasers available, SPI says. According to SPI's roadmap, single fibre, single-mode output powers well in excess of a kilowatt will be achieved in the not too distant future. These lasers can then be combined to produce multi-kW solutions with excellent beam quality, efficiency and reliability. The work was funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency under their High Power Fibre Laser program.

David Parker, SPI's CEO, commented, "This result is another example of how SPI is developing scaleable fiber laser designs and architectures, from the 100-W fibre laser products that we are offering today to the kilowatt fibre lasers we will be delivering. These lasers reflect SPI's execution to our roadmap of delivering advanced, manufacturable fiber laser technology to our OEMs".

About SPI
SPI believes it is at the forefront of a revolution in the design and manufacture of optical components, delivering state-of-the art products that are driving down the inventory and maintenance costs of its customers in the industrial, aerospace, analytical, communications and sensing markets.

Its innovations in high-power lasers, amplification and wavelength management are underpinned by its unique, patented specialty fiber technology and manufacturing capability. The company's current product range includes: fibre lasers and laser arrays, high-power optical amplifiers and sources, filters (fibre Bragg gratings), combining optics and dispersion compensators. SPI's gratings have the world's lowest distortion and combined with their ultra-low dispersion, make them very easy to use.

More information at www.spioptics.com and www.orc.soton.ac.uk

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