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NIF to Use JDS Uniphase Modulators

Photonics.com
Feb 2005
SAN JOSE, Calif., Feb. 2 -- JDS Uniphase announced it was awarded a contract to provide electro-optic modulators for the National Ignition Facility (NIF) project at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). When completed in 2008, NIF is expected to be the largest laser in the world. As part of this 192-beam laser system, NIF is using custom-manufactured JDS Uniphase lithium niobate modulators.

NIF's 192 beams will produce a combined 500 trillion watts of power in an ultraviolet laser pulse with energy up to 1.8 megajoules. With JDS Uniphase design expertise and transmission modulators, which are critical for precise pulse shaping, the NIF laser can perform a wide variety of applications in high-energy-density, inertial fusion energy and basic science research. The modulators were developed in partnership between the NIF laser design team and JDS Uniphase engineers.

The NIF project is currently under construction at Livermore with funding from the Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Nuclear Security Administration. Experiments performed on NIF will be essential to DOE's Stockpile Stewardship Program to ensure the safety, performance, and reliability of the nation's nuclear stockpile. NIF will also have basic science applications in such areas as astrophysics, hydrodynamics and material properties, and is expected to provide insight into the viability of thermonuclear fusion as a future economic energy source.

NIF is the latest in a long line of large laser systems at LLNL, dating to the mid-1970s, built for inertial confinement fusion research. A number of innovations have arisen from laser research as LLNL, including small, inexpensive radars for motion detectors; backup system alarms; medical monitors; CAD/CAM systems used in engineering; fast, handheld biological detection devices; and lasers for medicine and manufacturing.

JDS Uniphase makes products that provide innovative optical solutions for communications, commercial and consumer applications, including components, modules and subsystems for markets including communications, display, commercial lasers and document and product authentication.

For more information, visit: www.jdsu.com



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