Custom Multi-hole Laser Flow Tubes
and Cavity Filters
Cascade Laser provides custom machined laser cavity filters and multi-hole laser flow tubes in a variety of different materials, including Pyrex, Quartz (Fused Silica), Cerium Doped Glass, and 5% or 10% Samarium doped Glass. We can create complex shapes to exacting specifications for use within laser cavities. These optical elements are often used as stand-alone flow tubes, but they can also be encapsulated in highly reflective materials like Barium Sulfate, known for it's reflective properties in the Near IR pump band.
The material chosen for the laser flow tube will depend on your application.
Here is a brief overview of each material we offer....
Pyrex Glass is by far the most popular material for laser flow tubes. It blocks all UV Light below 300nm, so it makes an excellent and inexpensive filter for this reason. Although Pyrex blocks a lot of the UV wavelength, it does not have the added advantage that Cerium Doped Quartz has, of fluorescing in the visible range and creating higher pumping efficiency.
Quartz Glass is more expensive than Pyrex. The advantage to using Quartz Glass is when you need the flow tube to transmit deep into the UV range. Quartz Glass will transmit UV down to about 200nm.
Cerium Doped Quartz is more expensive than Pyrex Glass or standard Quartz Glass. The advantage to Cerium Doped Quartz is that it blocks the UV light down to around 380nm, virtually blocking all the UV. In addition, Cerium Doped Quartz fluoresces in the visible range and therefore slightly increases pump efficiency in many lasing mediums.
Samarium Doped Glass is by far the most expensive option. Samarium Doped Glass blocks all UV light below 400nm, so it is an excellent UV filter. Like Cerium Doped Glass, Samarium Doped Glass also fluoresces in the visible range, causing a slight increase in pumping efficiency with some lasing mediums. The property that sets Samarium Doped Glass apart from Cerium Doped Glass, is that it also blocks the 1064nm wavelength. This is very important when pumping Nd:YAG lasers which operate at 1064nm, because the 1064nm wavelength coming from the lamp can interfere with the 1064nm wavelength created when pumping the Neodymium in the crystal.
After the glass is machined to shape, it is ground and then polished to clear both inside and out. Finally it goes through a chemical curing process that strengthens the glass. Because Samarium is machined to size, it can be made in just about any size and shape you can imagine.