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Symmetry enhancement and spot-size reduction through radial beam stacking in a multichannel CO2 laser array

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6 Author(s)
Yelden, E.F. ; Dept. of Electr. Eng., Alberta Univ., Edmonton, Alta., Canada ; Scott, S.W.C. ; Strohschein, J.D. ; Seguin, H.J.J.
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The beam quality of a diffusion-cooled RF-excited radial-geometry CO2-slab-laser array is investigated. The system is shown to negate many of the disadvantages inherent with slab lasers, namely, asymmetric beams, multiple focal spots, and linear polarization. In addition, the effective spot size is reduced as a result of radial stacking of the individual asymmetric but azimuthally distributed, incoherent, output beamlets. A performance demonstration with sheet-metal cutting has produced excellent results in terms of kerf width, depth of penetration, and cut directionality

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Quantum Electronics, IEEE Journal of  (Volume:30 ,  Issue: 8 )