18 Octobre – Thesis defense - Florian Tournemenne

14 h30 Amphi - Institut Lasers et Plasmas (Le Barp)

Visual defect impact on high power laser beam propagation.

Each beam of a high power laser facility, such as the Laser MégaJoule, is shaped and amplified thanks to hundreds optical components such as amplifier slabs at Brewster’s angle, lenses, mirrors, phase plates, diffraction gratings... Of course, all these components cannot be perfect; there are some defects on their surface. These imperfections appear at each stage of the life of the component, during polishing, coating, or mitigation process or when the component is used on the facility. They have a huge impact on the energy losses delivered on the target and they decrease the resistance of downstream components to intense light. The ISO 10110-7 standard is currently used to specify the visual defects. However, this standard is poorly justified and do not fit a high power laser needs. In this thesis, we are focused on the fratricide effect. Light propagates through a defect, then, some intensity modulations appear along the propagation. The damage law states that high energy density leads to an increase of the damage probability. Firstly, we investigate the characteristic parameters of the defect morphology linked to the formation of downstream << hot spots >>. Then, the link between these typical parameters and the high intensifications are confirmed by experiments on real defects. Secondly, a power criterion is demonstrated to guarantee the linear propagation hypothesis. This criterion is compared to numerical simulations and it is shown how the nonlinear propagation, induced by Kerr effect, can be different between the << hot spot >> formed by a defect and a Gaussian beam. Finally, the results are used to improve the visual defect specification thanks to a better understanding of the fratricide effect.

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