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CLEO 06: New products shower the exhibition floor

25 May 2006

A brief look at some of the new products launched at this year's exhibition.

•  Shown for the first time at CLEO 06, the Silhouette pulse shaper from Coherent can be used to enhance the performance of ultrafast laser systems. Based on a spatial light modulator, the unit provides closed-loop measurement and optimization of both the spectral phase and amplitude of ultrafast pulses. Pulse characteristics can be monitored and controlled at any location within the setup, including after beam delivery optics or at the output of an oscillator or amplifier, using the device's a low profile, fiber-coupled sensor. Software controlled, the pulse shaper suits both commercial and home-built ultrafast laser systems.

•  Spectra-Physics has introduced the Spitfire Pro XP and the Spitfire Pro 5W ultrafast amplifiers for use with femtosecond oscillators. The single-Pockels cell cavity design found in both versions is said by the firm to dramatically reduce intracavity dispersion and losses to give unprecedented specifications for regenerative amplification.

Using chirped-pulse and regenerative amplification, the Spitfire Pro XP generates sub-35 fs pulses with more than 3 mJ at 1 kHz. To achieve higher pulse energies, the Spitfire Pro 5W includes a hybrid architecture that combines a regenerative cavity and a multipass amplification stage to deliver sub-40 fs, sub-120 fs or picosecond pulses with more than 5 mJ at 1 kHz.

•  Thales Laser of France has designed its ATLAS pump laser to deliver a very high output of 50 J at 527 nm with a pulse duration of less than 20 nanoseconds and a repetition rate of up to 0.1 Hz. Conceived as a high-quality pump source for ultrafast PW Ti:Sapphire lasers, the unit is a glass phosphate, flash-lamp pumped device with a compact footprint of just 2000 x 1500 mm.

•  The FCPA µJewel D-1000 is the latest addition to IMRA's range of ultrafast pulsed fiber lasers for materials processing applications. Based on the firm's patented fiber chirped pulse amplification technology (FCPA), the device offers up to 10 microjoule pulse energy in the near-infrared. Units can be configured at repetition rates from 100 kHz to 5 MHz, to give users the choice of high energy operation or fast processing speeds.

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