Abstract

The dependence on wavelength of repetitive-pulse (10 Hz, 8–10 ns) laser-induced damage on beta barium metaborate (BBO) has been investigated. The thresholds of dielectric breakdown in bulk crystal have been found to be 0.3 GW/cm2 at 266 nm, 0.9 GW/cm2 at 355 nm, 2.3 GW/cm2 at 532 nm, and 4.5 GW/cm2 at 1064 nm. Results indicate two-photon absorption at 266 and 355 nm, which helps to produce an avalanche effect that causes breakdown at each of the four wavelengths tested. Neither the BBO refractive indices nor the absorption spectrum change until breakdown occurs.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

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