Researchers develop world’s first blue-violet ultrafast pulsed semiconductor laser with 100 watt output

July 21, 2010, Sony
Beam emitted by the blue-violet ultrafast pulsed semiconductor laser. (Arrow indicates the semiconductor optical amplifier)

Tohoku University and Sony researchers have succeeded in developing a blue-violet ultrafast pulsed semiconductor laser with dramatically improved peak laser beam output levels that are 100 times that of the world's current highest levels.

This latest successful development is an all-semiconductor laser pulse source with a of 405 in the blue-violet region. It is capable of generating optical pulses in the ultrafast duration of 3 picoseconds, with ultrahigh output peak power of 100 watts and repetition frequency of 1 gigahertz.

Advanced control of the newly-developed and proprietarily-constructed GaN-based mode-locked semiconductor laser and semiconductor optical amplifier have enabled peak output power in excess of 100 watts to be achieved, which is more than a hundred times the world’s highest output value for conventional blue-violet pulse . 

Although there have been ultra high-output laser devices combining solid-state lasers and a second harmonic generation unit for high functionality and high-value leading-edge chemical research applications in the past, the light source box itself was bulky and a specialist technician was required to ensure the stable operation of the laser.

There are high expectations that this newly-developed semiconductor laser system, which incorporates semiconductor diodes, can have a much wider range of future applications. For instance, this technology enables the size of components such as the light source box to be drastically reduced.

This newly-developed ultra high-output, ultrafast pulsed semiconductor laser light source is capable of using a nonlinear optical process known as two-photon absorption, which occurs only as a result of high intensity optical pulses. When light from the is concentrated on the lens, it creates chemical and thermal changes in the vicinity of the lens focus spot which is narrower than even the diameter of the focus spot of the lens itself.

It is anticipated that application of these properties will be possible in a wide range of fields such as three-dimensional (3D) nano-fabrication of inorganic/organic materials in the order of nanometers, and next-generation large-capacity optical disc storage.

tested the principles for applying this technology in next-generation large-capacity optical disc-storage by creating void marks with a diameter of approximately 300 nanometers at intervals of 3 micrometers on the interior of plastic material, and successfully read these marks with the laser beam.

Explore further: Sharp's New Semiconductor Laser for Triple- and Quadruple- Layer Blu-ray Discs

More information: These research findings were also published in the latest edition of Applied Physics Letters. (Appl. Phys. Lett. volume 97, issue 2, page 021101 (2010); doi:10.1063/1.3462942 (3 pages), Online Publication Date: 12 July 2010

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Jul 21, 2010
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3.5 / 5 (14) Jul 21, 2010
good bye blue ray - hello purple ray
Actually, Blu(e)-Ray is purple ray in reality (405nm), so nothing new regarding the wavelength here :-P

And as far as the article goes:
..have enabled peak output power in excess of 100 watts to be achieved, which is more than a HUNDRED times the world’s highest output value for conventional blue-violet pulse semiconductor lasers.
Todays fastest and commercialy widespread Blu-Ray writers are equiped with same wavelength (405nm) laser diodes of a semi-continuous powerhandling sometimes in excess of 1000mW - sustainable even with half-decent cooling. I believe everyone knows what the difference between continuous and pulsed means in redard to LED/LD peak output..

Even if the pulsed peak maximum of todays blu-ray diodes was equal to their continuous rating, I somehow don't think they are using "the worlds most powerfull" 405nm LD's in the BR units. Some PR involved here, it seems..

Though many thumbs up for this important advance :)

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