Material processing with pulsed radially and azimuthally polarized laser radiation
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We report on the generation of radially and azimuthally polarized Q-switched laser radiation and its application in material processing. The power levels were sufficiently high to study micro-hole drilling in different metals. Depending on the optical properties of the metal, either radial or azimuthal polarization shows the best efficiency and the effect is attributed to waveguiding. For steel, a comparison to linearly or circularly polarized laser radiation indicates that the doughnut-shaped beam with azimuthal polarization is the most energy-efficient in producing holes of the same diameter and depth.
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