Competing effects of Kerr nonlinearity and K-photon absorptions on continuous-wave laser inscriptions
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Material processing with laser offers a reliable tool in a large variety of micromachining technology, ranging from on-disc inscriptions to cell ablations through DNA combing and imprinting for fabrications of micro and nanofluidic devices. In these applications lasers are designed to operate in specific regimes characterized by their powers and wavelengths, so understanding characteristic properties of the distinct possible laser operation regimes turns out to be a relevant step toward optimization of their uses as well as improvement of the technology. In this work we examine the stability of a model of femtosecond laser intended for laser inscriptions in nonlinear transparent media, taking into consideration the laser-induced material damage and multiphoton ionization. The model approximates the laser dynamics by a complex Ginzburg–Landau equation with a Kerr plus a high-order nonlinear term accounting for K-photon ionization, coupled to a Drude equation for time evolution of the electron plasma density. Following the Benjamin–Feir instability theory it is shown that depending on characteristic parameters of the model, multiphoton ionization processes can stabilize continuous-wave or pulse regimes. These parameters include the group-delay dispersion, the linear and nonlinear gains, the phase shift per roundtrip and the plasma ionization rate.
KeywordsLaser inscription Multiphoton absorptions Continuous-wave operation Modulational instability
The first author thanks the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS)-Rwanda branch, for a visit during which part of this work was completed.
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