Antireflective coatings with high damage threshold prepared by laser ablation
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Latest developments in the field of high power ultra-short pulse lasers have led to intensive studies dedicated to the fabrication possibility of new antireflective coatings which exhibit high damage threshold. Therefore, this study is focused on the deposition and characterization of metal oxide heterostructures followed by laser-induced damage threshold tests which evidence their application in high power laser optics. Al2O3, SiO2, and HfO2 layers are combined to obtain different heterostructures, i.e. HfO2/Al2O3/HfO2/Al2O3/HfO2 and HfO2/SiO2/HfO2/SiO2/HfO2. The metal oxide heterostructures are deposited in a controllable oxygen atmosphere, either at room temperature or high temperatures (600 °C) by pulsed laser deposition (PLD). The morphological, structural and optical properties of the as-deposited heterostructures are first investigated. Atomic force microscopy and spectroscopic ellipsometry investigations reveal a lower roughness of the heterostructures based on HfO2/Al2O3 layers grown at 600 °C as compared to those grown at room temperature. Furthermore, following the laser-induced damage threshold (LIDT) tests carried out with a Ti–Sapphire laser, higher LIDT values are obtained for the HfO2/Al2O3-based heterostructures than for the HfO2/SiO2-based heterostructures. The ability to control the morphological and structural properties of the antireflective coatings by modifying the deposition parameters of the metal oxide heterostructures demonstrates that PLD is a suitable technique for the manufacturing of antireflective coatings for high power ultra-short laser systems.
Financial support from the Romanian National Nucleus Program—contract 16 N/2019, the Romanian National Authority for Scientific Research and CNCS—UEFISCDI project number PN-II-PT-PCCA-2013-4-1870 (ARCOLAS), PN-III-P1-1.2-PCCDI-2017-0637 (MultiMonD2), and PN-III-P1-1.2-PCCDI-2017-0172 (TESTES), is gratefully acknowledged. M.O.Cernaianu acknowledges the support by the Extreme Light Infrastructure Nuclear Physics (ELI-NP) Phase II, a project co-financed by the Romanian Government and the European Union through the European Regional Development Fund and the Competitiveness Operational Programme (1/07.07.2016, COP, ID 1334). The authors acknowledge the support of Dr. A. Moldovan and S. Brajnicov with the AFM measurements.
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