Coated laser optics are used to optimize the characteristics of the emitted laser beam. However, losses are produced at each glass surface - thus the number of optics should be reduced to a minimum. Laser Components (Hudson, NH) offers laser optics that have complex coatings on both the front and the back. From a technical standpoint, this was almost impossible to achieve for a long time because the coating process on the second side heated the first coating and often caused it to crack. The more complex the coating, the more pronounced the problem was.

For applications in resonators, it makes sense to use optics with a dichroic coating on the front, for example a coating that is highly reflective for 1064 nm and simultaneously allows the passage of pump light. The back can be highly or partially reflective for the same or another wavelength. It’s also possible to combine a polarization coating on one side and a mirror coating on the other side. It would be conceivable to use a thin-film polarizer at 45° for 1064 nm, the back side of which is also coated for coupling in another laser wavelength.

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Photonics Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the January, 2015 issue of Photonics Tech Briefs Magazine.

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