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IEEE SoCal Tech-Talk – How Lasers are like Wolves!
June 24 @ 1:00 am - 3:00 am
How Lasers are like Wolves:
A Deep Dive into Laser Performance Analysis, Rate Equations, and Ion-Ion Interactions
Over the past 60 years, lasers have moved from a laboratory curiosity to useful items in everyday life. About five years after first realizing the laser, Ted Maiman referred to it as “a solution in search of a problem;” a 2006 documentary about the laser was named after this quote. Today, lasers are found in pointers, replacing a long stick; in CD, DVD, and Blu-Ray players; in cars, used for rangefinding; in telecommunication systems; and with a wide variety of scientific and military application. This growth in the capability of the laser has occurred partly due to improvements in technology and materials, and partly through better understanding of the transfer of energy within the laser material. When specific applications appear, it may be possible to design a laser to fit the need.
Of course, if you want a laser for a particular use, it helps if you can predict and analyze its performance. A key method of doing so is the use of rate equations, first-order differential equations that tie together the rate of energy transfer within the laser material. These simple equations can be used to design and analyze a wide variety of laser capabilities – and can also be used to describe other systems that have related change rates. This talk will concentrate on the laser applications.
There are many active media for lasers. For example, ion lasers (such as Ar+, Kr+, and HeNe) use ionized gases; the HeNe includes energy transfer among the He+ and Ne+ ions. If ions are added to solid materials, such as Nd3+ replacing a portion of the Y3+ in Nd:YAG, the laser is called solid-state, and can be more compact and more efficient than the ion gas lasers. Other laser forms include semiconductor (or diode) lasers, which use the emission of light at an electrical p-n junction to produce a laser beam; chemical lasers, which generate energy by producing chemicals that are already in an excited state; non-ionized gas lasers, which use vibrational and rotational modes to produce the beam; and enough related methods that an entire talk would be needed just to list and describe them.
This talk concentrates on an introduction to rate equations and their application to laser performance analysis. Starting from the simplest possible system, we will add more complexity and more energy transitions, including methods for optimizing the laser output as desired for various applications. We will discuss what happens when additional active materials are added to a laser, which can result in ion-ion interactions.
We will even describe how lasers are like wolves!
Speaker(s): Russell Kurtz, Ph.D.,
06:00pm – 6:15pm PST: Welcome / Introduction
06:15pm – 7:15pm PST: SoCal Talk
07:15pm – 8:00pm PST: Q/A & more networking
Virtual, California, United States, Virtual: https://events.vtools.ieee.org/m/272018