Abstract

In this paper speckle correlation is introduced as a tool to investigate the heat-influenced area during material processing with laser light. Two materials were investigated, a pure silver sheet and a sheet of SiC–diamond composite. The processing laser used in the experiments was a diode-pumped acousto-optical Q-switched Nd:YAG laser that allowed percussion hole drilling to be performed using green light through a second-harmonic crystal. The measurements were performed using a continuous-wave He–Ne laser and a digital camera. The experimental results show that the heat-influenced area is ~5000 times larger than the actual hole being drilled and that it reaches a steady-state condition toward the end of the processing cycle.

© 2005 Optical Society of America

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