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Title:Scientific principles for the electric oxygen-iodine laser
Author(s):Benavides, Gabriel
Director of Research:Solomon, Wayne C.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Solomon, Wayne C.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Eden, James G.; Elliott, Gregory S.; Austin, Joanna M.
Department / Program:Aerospace Engineering
Discipline:Aerospace Engineering
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Electric Oxygen-Iodine Laser (EOIL)
Electric Discharge Excited Oxygen-Iodine Laser (DOIL)
singlet delta
singlet oxygen
1315-nm transition
Abstract:This work describes a systematic investigation to advance the scientific understanding of the electric oxygen-iodine laser (EOIL). The research reported on herein was largely conducted between the years of 2006 and 2011. The work comes on the forefront of EOIL development, recently demonstrated in 2005 with positive gain and lasing through a long-term partnership between the University of Illinois and CU Aerospace in Champaign, IL. Though only first demonstrated in 2005, research towards constructing an EOIL has been carried out periodically since the early 1970s. With low yields of the energy reservoir, O2(a), achievable in an electric discharge, EOIL research has for many years taken a lower priority when compared to the research of high-yield chemical oxygen-iodine lasers (COIL), which reported successes as early as 1978. While both lasers emit on the same I(2P1/2)→I(2P3/2) transition at 1315 nm, offering nearly equal promise of beam quality and performance, an elusive attractiveness remained with EOIL as a result of nearly four decades of unsuccessful attempts. The reduction in toxicity, complexity, and maintenance of an electrically driven device offers numerous operational and logistical advantages over the COIL. The years of failed attempts with EOIL can largely be explained by the lack of a sufficient body of theoretical and experimental research adequately documenting the technology. This research can be generally classified as: (i) high yield discharge-driven singlet oxygen production, and (ii) the added post-discharge complexity of a diverse media of active oxygen species. The research described here-in was fundamental in increasing reported gain and laser power of EOIL devices from approximately 0.01 %/cm and 500 Milliwatts in 2006 to 0.3 %/cm and 481 Watts by mid-2011. This represents a factor of 30 increase in gain and two orders of magnitude increase in laser power. Such results were only achievable by systematically analyzing each component of EOIL, developing a theoretical understanding of the requirements for each element of the laser, and devising experimental hardware to validate the work. The technologies considered in this work include discharge-driven singlet oxygen generators (DSOG), species and thermal energy regulation (STER) devices, iodine pre-dissociation (IPD) devices, as well as various implementations of high-reflectivity resonators. Though now established by our group, a more complete body of research is prerequisite to EOIL achieving its ultimate potential, matching or exceeding the capabilities of similar high energy lasers. This topic is a final chapter in a group of thesis topics conducted by AE and ECE academics that ultimately contributed to the success of electric oxygen-iodine laser research conducted at the University of Illinois.
Issue Date:2014-01-16
Rights Information:Copyright 2013 Gabriel Benavides
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-01-16
Date Deposited:2013-12

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