Wavelength dependence of femtosecond laser-induced damage threshold of optical materials

Abstract : An experimental and numerical study of the laser-induced damage of the surface of optical material in the femtosecond regime is presented. The objective of this work is to investigate the different processes involved as a function of the ratio of photon to bandgap energies and compare the results to models based on nonlinear ionization processes. Experimentally, the laser-induced damage threshold of optical materials has been studied in a range of wavelengths from 1030 nm (1.2 eV) to 310 nm (4 eV) with pulse durations of 100 fs with the use of an optical parametric amplifier system. Semi-conductors and dielectrics materials, in bulk or thin film forms, in a range of bandgap from 1 to 10 eV have been tested in order to investigate the scaling of the femtosecond laser damage threshold with the bandgap and photon energy. A model based on the Keldysh photo-ionization theory and the description of impact ionization by a multiple-rate-equation system is used to explain the dependence of laser-breakdown with the photon energy. The calculated damage fluence threshold is found to be consistent with experimental results. From these results, the relative importance of the ionization processes can be derived depending on material properties and irradiation conditions. Moreover, the observed damage morphologies can be described within the framework of the model by taking into account the dynamics of energy deposition with one dimensional propagation simulations in the excited material and thermodynamical considerations.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, November 18, 2015 - 7:52:37 AM
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Laurent Gallais, Dam-Bé Douti, Mireille Commandre, Gintare Bataviciute, Egidjus Pupka, et al.. Wavelength dependence of femtosecond laser-induced damage threshold of optical materials. Journal of Applied Physics, American Institute of Physics, 2015, 117, pp.223103. ⟨10.1063/1.4922353⟩. ⟨hal-01228358⟩

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