9 May 2012

Osram’s 65%-efficient laser bars provide 200W cw for industrial lasers

Osram Opto Semiconductors GmbH of Regensburg, Germany says that its new SPL BKxx-40WFT series of laser bars offer high efficiency of up to 65% at 200W optical output power, and can simplify the design of laser systems and reduce their cost, the firm claims. Laserline, which manufactures high-power diode laser systems for industrial material processing, is taking advantage of these benefits in its new fiber-coupled diode lasers, which can be used in applications from welding of metals and plastics to surface treatment and cutting.

Image: Osram Opto’s SPL BKxx-40WFT laser bar series.

Measuring 10mm wide and with a cavity length of 4mm, the new laser bars produce infrared radiation at wavelengths of 915-1020nm. Due to their high efficiency, average operating lifetime is more than 30,000 hours, amply meeting requirements for industrial laser systems.

Apart from the optical pumping of fiber lasers, one of the main applications of infrared lasers - with more than 1kW of power - is the direct processing of metals (welding, brazing, cutting, hardening, cladding and coating) for use in automotive manufacturing. Direct diode lasers are the most efficient laser light sources for such fiber-coupled systems and are a more efficient alternative to the carbon dioxide lasers that have traditionally been used.

Osram says that its new laser bars are at the core of the latest and most powerful fiber-coupled diode laser series from Laserline. The complete system is water-cooled and supplies 2-15kW of power via a fiber with a core diameter of 1-2mm. Due to the high efficiency of the laser bars, its overall efficiency reaches maximum levels of more than 40%.

“Our developments in the field of laser bars are pushing the utilization of direct diode lasers into ever higher power ranges,” says Michael Klein, Osram Opto’s marketing manager for laser bars. “This enables our customers to open up new markets, and benefits from the improved technology include lower investment cost because fewer laser bars are required to generate the needed power,” he adds. “The cost for electricity and maintenance will also decrease due to their high efficiency and long operating lifetime.”

The laser bars have been developed on the basis of results generated by Osram Opto in the HEMILAS project, which was supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research with the goal of developing a new generation of semiconductor lasers with higher output powers, narrower emission areas, and extremely high optical power densities. The main results to date are the efficiency-optimized structure of epitaxial layers and improved mirror technologies with a high damage threshold.

Tags: Osram Laser bars

Visit: www.osram-os.com

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