Development of a time-resolved white-light interference microscope for optical phase measurements during fs-laser material processing

A. Horn, D. Wortmann, A. Brand, I. Mingareev
Appl. Phys. A Vol. 101, No. 2, pp. 231-235

FCPA µJewel D-1000

A modified Mach–Zehnder interferometer set-up combined with microscope objectives has been developed for the measurement of phase changes in the processed material sample, like modification and melting of glass. The white light is generated by focusing ultrafast laser radiation (tp = 80 fs) in a Sapphire crystal using a micro-lens array to minimize temporal and spatial fluctuations in the whitelight continuum. Lateral and coaxial pump-probe measurements of the phase changes during material processing are performed using two coupled ultrafast laser sources at different repetition rates (frep = 1 Hz – 1 MHz). The optical phase shift and therefore the refractive index of the material are calculated from the interference images using two approaches. The knowledge of the refractive index during the laser processing with a temporal resolution in the ps-range and a spatial resolution of several microns leads to a better understanding of the initial processes for the permanent material modifications.

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