1 February 2023
Kyocera SLD Laser introduces high-power blue laser product line for industrial, biomedical, defense and display applications
In booth 1762 at the SPIE Photonics West 2023 exhibition in San Francisco (31 January – 2 February), Kyocera SLD Laser Inc (KSLD) of Goleta, near Santa Barbara, CA, USA — which is commercializing gallium nitride (GaN)-based laser light sources for automotive, mobility, specialty lighting and consumer applications — is introducing high-power 5W blue laser diode products for industrial, biomedical, defense and display applications. The firm is also showcasing its new high-brightness white/IR LaserLight SMD products (winner of the 2021 Prism Award).
Additionally, KSLD is demonstrating its DataLight high-speed LiFi communication system (a 2023 Prism Award finalist) as well as its new innovations in high-efficiency laser diodes for augmented-reality/virtual-reality (AR/VR) applications and efficient optical power transfer technology.
Based on KSLD’s proprietary high-gain semi-polar GaN architecture, the new high-power blue laser diode products deliver 5W of optical power at 445nm. The product is available in a TO-can package or chip-on-submount, as well as a fiber-delivered configuration.
The devices are suitable for integration into customer end-systems in industrial marking, engraving for non-metals and organics such as resins, plastics and printed-circuit boards, as well as in 3D printing and welding of metals such as copper for electric vehicle (EV) battery production where absorption is more than 10 times higher than for infrared lasers.
High-power blue lasers also have a broad range of use in biomedical applications including dental, surgical and dermatology (where absorptions in hemoglobin and melanin are more than five times that of infrared lasers) as well as defense applications including avionics light detection and ranging (LiDAR) and undersea communications.
Additionally, high-power blue laser diodes are used in projection displays to excite RGB phosphors to replace lamps in portable projectors, home theater, boardroom and education projectors, as well as large venues and cinema.
KSLD is also applying its high-gain semi-polar GaN to develop high-efficiency low-power red, green and blue laser diodes to miniaturize, brighten and reduce power consumption of RGB laser beam scanning modules for the emerging AR/VR market.
KSLD is also showcasing its LaserLight SMD devices that deliver high-brightness white and infrared (IR) dual illumination for medical, machine vision, inspection, safety lighting, bioinstrumentation and other applications that require high-intensity spots or high-efficiency fiber-optic delivery of white light. The firm is featuring an expanded IR wavelength range from 850nm to 1000nm, and increased white light output up to 1000 lumens to deliver high-brightness, high-visibility, eye-safe illumination.
Mobility applications include automotive, avionics, drones, railway and marine white light and IR night vision, range finding and flash LiDAR. Specialty lighting applications include portable flashlights and light bars, high-lumen spotlights for avionics, helicopter search & rescue and security applications, as well as entertainment and outdoor lighting. Until now, dual-emission white/IR sources have not been possible because LEDs and legacy lamp-based light sources are unable to deliver high-brightness white and IR emission from the same point source, and they are incapable of being modulated at the high speeds required for accurate sensing and fast data rates.
To support the future of wireless connectivity, KSLD is displaying DataLight, which is claimed to be the first laser LiFi commercial development kit featuring a high-speed 1Gbps, secure, RF-free, eye-safe bidirectional link. Laser LiFi is being adopted in mobility applications including car-to-x exterior, vehicle interiors, airplane cabins, undersea and space, defense and security, as well as future smart cities, healthcare, and smart factories. KSLD says that it is pioneering LiFi innovations for future products as well, and recently demonstrated record performance of 100Gbps. This product is a finalist for the 2023 Prism awards in the Laser category.
Beyond lighting, sensing and communications, KSLD is demonstrating optical power transmission over fiber using its high-efficiency GaN laser diode and photodiode chip technology. The firm reckons that this advance in the field of power transfer has the potential to replace heavy and sensitive metal wire harnesses in mobility and harsh-environment applications with a lightweight, noise-free optical solution, increasing the efficiency and extending the range of electric vehicles, airplanes or satellites, while making them more secure and safe. This power-over-light solution can be configured to include optical data communications to deliver data and power to sensors in a distributed system in a vehicle or even in space, where radiation-hardened GaN-based semiconductors are ideally suited.