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Flexible Laser Produced

Photonics Spectra
Dec 2000
Daniel S. Burgess

MUNICH, Germany -- Scientists from Ludwig Maximilians Universi-tät, the Fraunhofer Institut für Solare Energiesysteme in Freiburg and the Max Planck Institut für Polymerforschung in Mainz, all in Germany, have developed a laser design that may enable the production of the devices in any shape and size. The 491-nm flexible polymer laser comprises a 300-nm-thick layer of ladder-type poly(p-phenylene) (LPPP) on a lithographically embossed substrate of polyethylene terephtalate (PET).

The substrate features a regular pattern of 160-nm-deep pits, which the researchers etched into acrylic that coated the PET using an ultraviolet process, and 150-fs pulses from a 400-nm mode-locked Ti:sapphire laser excited the LPPP to lase at pump energies greater than 1.2 nJ. The near-diffraction-limited output of the device, which the team reported in the Oct. 9 issue of Applied Physics Letters, is perpendicular to the substrate.

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