Radiation induced losses in Ytterbium doped laser materials
Sammanfattning: In this work, two types of ytterbium (Yb) doped laser materials are studied, crys-talline Yb:YAG and amorphous Yb/Al silica in both preform and fiber. Yb is suitableas a laser ion because of its simple energy level structure and low quantum defect.The ground and excited energy levels are separated by 10000 cm?1, but the exis-tence of another transition in the ultra violet (UV) region causes problems in a Ybdoped laser. The UV absorption band represents a charge transfer (CT) transitionwhich involves the transition of an electron from a nearby oxygen ion to the Yb ionand changes the Yb ion from trivalent to divalent with the corresponding forma-tion of a hole center. The color center formation causes a permanent optical loss inthe material in the visible to near infrared (NIR) spectral region, which absorbs thepump and laser wavelengths. The output power of the laser is reduced and this isknown as the photodarkening (PD) phenomenon.It is suggested that the excited state absorption of the Yb3+ ion is involved in thetransfer route of NIR photons to the UV range.The increase of Yb2+ upon UV irradiation is shown in both Yb:YAG and theYb/Al silca preform. The existence of Yb2+ luminescence from a photodarkenedfiber is also shown, which proves that PD occurs through a CT process.
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