With increasing laser power the transient behavior of the optical components becomes more and more important, giving rise to investigations in this field, e.g. [1,2,3]. Especially the time dependence of the optical properties which influence the laser beam parameters is of interest.
In this paper the heating of optical components caused by the absorption of a small part of the laser power as well as the resulting deformation of the phase front of the laser beam have been studied with finite element analysis. For this, the spatial temperature profile, the mechanical deformation and the stress of the optical component have been calculated as a function of laser power, laser mode profile and irradiation time. Using the temperature dependence of the index of refraction, the spatially resolved optical path difference compared to the unirradiated component has been calculated with a ray tracing algorithm.
The results for various optical components (mirrors, windows; coated and uncoated) are given and compared to experimental investigations.
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