The assignee for this patent, patent number 8526110, is
Reporters obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Fast advances in the development of Yb-doped fiber lasers have changed the landscape of high-power lasers during the last decade. Yb-doped fiber lasers uniquely combine the diffraction-limited beam quality, distributed thermal loading and compact and modular packaging of fiber systems with high electrical-to-optical efficiency and broad gain bandwidth of Yb-gain medium that translates to high-average-power compact systems over a wide wavelength range. The fiber lasers have demonstrated up to a few thousand Watts (kW) with broad linewidths but the fiber laser output power is not expected to scale much beyond 10 kW due to thermal loading and optical nonlinear effects.
"To scale the output power of fiber-laser systems further, beam-combination approaches have been proposed and they are broadly classified into coherent-beam combination and spectral-beam combination. Both approaches require narrow linewidths on the order of a few GHz, which makes the power scaling of individual fiber laser channels challenging, primarily due to limitation posed by stimulated Brillouin scattering (SBS) in fiber. (Stimulated Brillouin scattering (SBS) is a well-known phenomenon that can lead to power limitations or even the destruction of a high-power fiber-laser system due to sporadic or unstable feedback, self-lasing, pulse compression and/or signal amplification.) Innovations in fiber and component technologies and fiber-laser designs have pushed the power to a few hundred Watts at narrow linewidths and expected to push the power to a few kW in the coming years. Beam-combination approaches can potentially combine multiple fiber-laser channels and scale the output power of fiber laser systems over 100 kW.
"Coherent-beam combination involves vectorially summing the output from multiple lasers by phase locking the individual emitters to a single frequency (1:
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