Article

Applied Physics A

, Volume 107, Issue 2, pp 445-454

Real-time control of polarisation in ultra-short-pulse laser micro-machining

  • O. J. AllegreAffiliated withLaser Group, School of Engineering, University of Liverpool Email author 
  • , W. PerrieAffiliated withLaser Group, School of Engineering, University of Liverpool
  • , K. BauchertAffiliated withBoulder Nonlinear Systems, Inc.
  • , D. LiuAffiliated withLaser Group, School of Engineering, University of Liverpool
  • , S. P. EdwardsonAffiliated withLaser Group, School of Engineering, University of Liverpool
  • , G. DeardenAffiliated withLaser Group, School of Engineering, University of Liverpool
  • , K. G. WatkinsAffiliated withLaser Group, School of Engineering, University of Liverpool

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Abstract

The use of a fast-response, transmissive, ferroelectric liquid-crystal device for real-time control of the polarisation direction of a femtosecond laser beam, and the benefits for various aspects of ultra-short pulse micro-machining, are discussed. Several configurations have been used to drive the polarisation in real-time. Our microscopic investigations of the resulting features revealed significant improvements in process efficiency and quality, compared to static linear and circular polarisations. Following our successful micro-machining tests, real-time polarisation control could emerge as a powerful tool in laser engineering.