Direct diode lasers have some of the most attractive features of any laser. They are very efficient, compact, wavelength versatile, low cost, and highly reliable. However, the full utilization of direct diode lasers has yet to be realized. This is mainly due their poor output beam quality. Because of this, direct diode lasers are typically used to pump other lasers such as bulk solid-state (rod and thin disk) and fiber lasers. In other words these other lasers are primarily used as brightness converters. Thus, currently industrial lasers for high brightness applications such as cutting and welding are dominated by CO2, fiber, and bulk solid-state lasers.

© 2013 IEEE

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