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Title: Phase modulation failsafe system for multi-kJ lasers based on optical heterodyne detection

Abstract

Amplification of the transverse scattered component of stimulated Brillouin scattering (SBS) can contribute to optical damage in the large aperture optics of multi-kJ lasers. Because increased laser bandwidth from optical phase modulation (PM) can suppress SBS, high energy laser amplifiers are injected with PM light. Phase modulation distributes the single-frequency spectrum of a master oscillator laser among individual PM sidebands, so a sufficiently high modulation index β can maintain the fluence for all spectral components below the SBS threshold. To avoid injection of single frequency light in the event of a PM failure, a high-speed PM failsafe system (PMFS) must be employed. Because PM is easily converted to AM, essentially all PM failsafes detect AM, with the one described here employing a novel configuration where optical heterodyne detection converts PM to AM, followed by passive AM power detection. Although the PMFS is currently configured for continuous monitoring, it can also detect PM for pulse durations ≥2 ns and could be modified to accommodate shorter pulses. This PMFS was deployed on the Z-Beamlet Laser (ZBL) at Sandia National Laboratories, as required by an energy upgrade to support programs at Sandia’s Z Facility such as magnetized liner inertial fusion. Depending on themore » origin of a PM failure, the PMFS responds in as little as 7 ns. In the event of an instantaneous failure during initiation of a laser shot, this response time translates to a 30–50 ns margin of safety by blocking a pulse from leaving ZBL’s regenerative amplifier, which prevents injection of single frequency light into the main amplification chain. In conclusion, the performance of the PMFS, without the need for operator interaction, conforms to the principles of engineered safety.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1477427
Report Number(s):
SAND-2018-10936J
Journal ID: ISSN 0034-6748; 668492
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC04-94AL85000
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Review of Scientific Instruments
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 89; Journal Issue: 10; Journal ID: ISSN 0034-6748
Publisher:
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
47 OTHER INSTRUMENTATION

Citation Formats

Armstrong, Darrell J., Looker, Quinn Michael, Stahoviak, John William, Smith, Ian C., Shores, J. E., Rambo, Patrick K., Schwarz, Jens, Speas, Christopher S., and Porter, John L. Phase modulation failsafe system for multi-kJ lasers based on optical heterodyne detection. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.1063/1.5051125.
Armstrong, Darrell J., Looker, Quinn Michael, Stahoviak, John William, Smith, Ian C., Shores, J. E., Rambo, Patrick K., Schwarz, Jens, Speas, Christopher S., & Porter, John L. Phase modulation failsafe system for multi-kJ lasers based on optical heterodyne detection. United States. doi:10.1063/1.5051125.
Armstrong, Darrell J., Looker, Quinn Michael, Stahoviak, John William, Smith, Ian C., Shores, J. E., Rambo, Patrick K., Schwarz, Jens, Speas, Christopher S., and Porter, John L. Wed . "Phase modulation failsafe system for multi-kJ lasers based on optical heterodyne detection". United States. doi:10.1063/1.5051125. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1477427.
@article{osti_1477427,
title = {Phase modulation failsafe system for multi-kJ lasers based on optical heterodyne detection},
author = {Armstrong, Darrell J. and Looker, Quinn Michael and Stahoviak, John William and Smith, Ian C. and Shores, J. E. and Rambo, Patrick K. and Schwarz, Jens and Speas, Christopher S. and Porter, John L.},
abstractNote = {Amplification of the transverse scattered component of stimulated Brillouin scattering (SBS) can contribute to optical damage in the large aperture optics of multi-kJ lasers. Because increased laser bandwidth from optical phase modulation (PM) can suppress SBS, high energy laser amplifiers are injected with PM light. Phase modulation distributes the single-frequency spectrum of a master oscillator laser among individual PM sidebands, so a sufficiently high modulation index β can maintain the fluence for all spectral components below the SBS threshold. To avoid injection of single frequency light in the event of a PM failure, a high-speed PM failsafe system (PMFS) must be employed. Because PM is easily converted to AM, essentially all PM failsafes detect AM, with the one described here employing a novel configuration where optical heterodyne detection converts PM to AM, followed by passive AM power detection. Although the PMFS is currently configured for continuous monitoring, it can also detect PM for pulse durations ≥2 ns and could be modified to accommodate shorter pulses. This PMFS was deployed on the Z-Beamlet Laser (ZBL) at Sandia National Laboratories, as required by an energy upgrade to support programs at Sandia’s Z Facility such as magnetized liner inertial fusion. Depending on the origin of a PM failure, the PMFS responds in as little as 7 ns. In the event of an instantaneous failure during initiation of a laser shot, this response time translates to a 30–50 ns margin of safety by blocking a pulse from leaving ZBL’s regenerative amplifier, which prevents injection of single frequency light into the main amplification chain. In conclusion, the performance of the PMFS, without the need for operator interaction, conforms to the principles of engineered safety.},
doi = {10.1063/1.5051125},
journal = {Review of Scientific Instruments},
number = 10,
volume = 89,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {10}
}

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