Abstract

Laser-damage thresholds and morphologies of hafnia single layers exposed under femtosecond, picosecond, and nanosecond single pulses (1030/1064nm) are reported. The samples were made with different deposition parameters in order to study how the damage behavior of the samples evolves with the pulse duration and how it is linked to the deposition process. In the femtosecond to picosecond regime, the scaling law of the laser-induced damage threshold as a function of pulse duration is in good agreement with the models of photo and avalanche ionization based on the rate equation for free electron generation. However, differences in the damage morphologies between samples are shown. No correlation between the nanosecond and femtosecond/picosecond laser-damage resistance of hafnia coatings could be established. We also report evidence of the transition in damage mechanisms for hafnia, from an ablation process linked to intrinsic properties of the material to a defect-induced process, that exists between a few picoseconds and a few tens of picoseconds.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

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