Abstract

An adaptive optical system for precise control of a laser beam’s mode structure has been developed. The system uses a dynamic lens based on controlled optical path deformation in a dichroic optical element that is heated with an auxiliary laser. Our method is essentially aberration free, has high dynamic range, and can be implemented with high average power laser beams where other adaptive optics methods fail. A quantitative model agrees well with our experimental data and demonstrates the potential of our method as a mode-matching and beam-shaping element for future large-scale gravitational wave detectors.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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