Output characteristics of Q-switched solid-state lasers using intracavity MEMS micromirrors

Ralf Bauer, Alan Paterson, Caspar Clark, Deepak Uttamchandani, Walter Lubeigt

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The output behavior of a Nd:YAG solid-state laser actively Q-switched by a MEMS scanning micromirror is presented. Using a gold-coated micromirror, maximum average output powers of 50mW and pulse durations as short as 120ns were obtained with a dual beam output. This output pattern originates from a pulse emission when the micromirror is at an angle from the cavity axis. The temporal and spatial behavior of this laser was experimentally characterized and then modelled using a numerical simulation of the laser rate equations. Finally, prospects for power-scaling this MEMS-based Q-switch technique are demonstrated using a dielectric-coated micromirror, which led to average output powers of up to 650mW and pulse energies above 40μJ.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1600908
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics
Issue number1
Early online date6 Aug 2014
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2015


  • micromirrors
  • output characteristics
  • Q-switched
  • solid-state lasers
  • intracavity
  • MEMS
  • MEMS scanning micromirror
  • active Q-switch
  • laser dynamics

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