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Fiber Lasers Find Their Footing

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Paula M. Powell, Senior Editor

The competition between fiber and disk lasers seems to be heating up with the fibers' quest for a share of the industrial welding and cutting market. A group of researchers from Southampton Photonics Inc. and the University of Southampton's Optoelectronics Research Centre, both in the UK, recently demonstrated 1 kW of output through a single fiber, with beam quality close to M2 = 3. Nearly 80 percent of the pump power launched into the fiber was converted to output power at 1090 nm. In June, the team had reported 600 W of output with M2 = 1.26. The specialty fiber manufacturing process...Read full article

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