Abstract

We present implementation of the energy-efficient and flexible laser beam shaping technique in a high-power and high-energy laser amplifier system. The beam shaping is based on a spatially variable wave plate (SVWP) fabricated by femtosecond laser nanostructuring of glass. We reshaped the initially Gaussian beam into a super-Gaussian (SG) of the 12th order with efficiency of about 50%. The 12th order of the SG beam provided the best compromise between large fill factor, low diffraction on the edges of the active media, and moderate intensity distribution modification during free-space propagation. We obtained 150 mJ pulses of 532 nm radiation. High-energy, pulse duration of 85 ps and the nearly flat-top spatial profile of the beam make it ideal for pumping optical parametric chirped pulse amplification systems.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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