Lithium niobate crystals
- Broad transparency region from 400 nm to 5000 nm
- High nonlinear, electro-optic and acousto-optic coefficients
- Non-hygroscopic, mechanically and chemically stable
- Electro-optic modulation and Q-switching
- Optical parametric oscillators (OPO) pumped at 1064 nm
- Quasi-phase-matched devices with periodically poled lithium niobate (PPLN)
Lithium niobate (LiNbO3, LN) crystals cannot compete with KTP, BBO or LBO nonlinear crystals in terms of nonlinear effectiveness and damage threshold. Fortunately, LN is characterized by a very high value of nonlinear-optic coefficient along the optical axis (up to 20 pm/V), therefore this crystal most often is used in context of periodic poling and quasi-phase matching (QPM). Periodically poled lithium niobate (PPLN) crystals are widely used as frequency doublers and optical parametric devices.
Main disadvantages of LN and PPLN crystals are relatively low damage threshold and high susceptibility to photorefractive damage. There are two ways to minimize photorefractive effect. Usually undoped LN must be operated at elevated temperature (100° - 200°). Another way is LN doping by magnesium oxide (MgO). What is good that, the addition of MgO maintains high nonlinear coefficient.
|Lithium niobate crystals|
|Orientation accuracy||<30 arcmin|
|Parallelism error||<20 arcsec|
|Perpendicularity error||<10 arcmin|
|Protective chamfers||<0,1 mm at 45°|
|Surface quality||10-5 S-D|
|Surface flatness||<λ/[email protected],8 nm|
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