Laser ablation transfer imaging using picosecond optical pulses: Ultra-high speed, lower threshold and high resolution

William A. Tolbert, I. Yin Sandy Lee, Xiaoning Wen, Dana D Dlott, Mark M. Doxtader, Ernest W. Ellis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

High-resolution color image production by laser ablation transfer (LAT) has been extended to the picosecond time regime. The use of psec optical pulses is shown to result in an order-of-magnitude reduction of the pulse fluence threshold, relative to previous work using 100-nsec duration pulses. The ablation fluence threshold with psec pulses is 8 mJ/cm2. It has been previously shown that the mechanisms of LAT with 100-nsec duration pulses involve thermochemical decomposition of the organic materials of the color coating layer. A thermal conduction model is used to show that with psec pulses, ablation can be induced at a lower fluence by an efficient process that involves vaporization of the thin aluminum interlayer between the substrate and the color coating, rather than the coating itself. Using psec pulses, it is possible to produce images at ultra-high speed. The principal drawback of psec LAT, the cost and complexity of the laser, has been greatly alleviated by the recent development of Kerr lens mode-locked (KLM) lasers. A brief discussion of the properties of a possible LAT imaging system using a KLM laser is presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)485-489
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Imaging Science and Technology
Volume37
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Computer Science Applications

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