Abstract

It may be advantageous in advanced gravitational-wave detectors to replace conventional beam splitters and Fabry–Perot input mirrors with diffractive elements. In each of these applications, the wavefront distortions produced by the absorption and subsequent heating of the grating can limit the maximum useful optical power. We present data on the wavefront distortions induced in a laser probe beam for both the reflected and diffracted beams from a grating that is heated by a Gaussian laser beam and compare these results to a simple theory of the wavefront distortions induced by thermoelastic deformations.

© 2007 Optical Society of America

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