Chapter 12 Optically Induced Damage and Multiphoton Absorption

12.1. Introduction to Optical Damage

A topic of great practical importance is optically induced damage of optical components. Optical damage is important because it ultimately limits the maximum amount of power that can be transmitted through a particular optical material. Optical damage thus imposes a constraint on the efficiency of many nonlinear optical processes by limiting the maximum field strength E that can be used to excite the nonlinear response without the occurrence of optical damage. In this context, it is worth pointing out that present laser technology can produce laser beams of sufficient intensity to exceed the damage thresholds of all known materials.

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