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LASCAD Laser Cavity Modelling Software

LASCAD Laser Cavity Modelling Software

Latest Update: version 3.6.4 released - click here for further details

Employs multi-physics simulation to optimise laser resonator design

Thermal lensing is one of the key problems which designers of laser cavities for solid-state lasers (SSL, DPSSL etc.) must consider. LASCAD™ software contains all of the simulation tools necessary to accurately model the performance of a laser resonator, serving as an optical bench on your PC and helping to save time and cost. For added utility, LASCAD is also now compatible with ray tracing programmes such as ZEMAX and TracePro. LASCAD is available in three, upgradeable modules. The main features of each of the three modules is described below.

LASCAD includes pre-designed FEA models to simplify the modelling of many resonator configurations. Dimensions of crystals and material properties are adjustable to assist the engineer with different laser cavity design concepts. These models also include laser crystals composed of different materials, including those with doped and undoped sections. FEA models for advanced lasers, such as thin disk lasers and side pumped sandwiched slabs are included. 

LASCAD's utility is demonstrated by the fact that nearly all leading manufacturers of solid state lasers are using it to bring improved lasers to market more quickly.  Results obtained using LASCAD have been verified by the Solid-State Lasers and Applications Team (ELSA) at LCFIO-Université Paris Sud. Download the paper here. The laser group of Professor Richard Wallenstein at the University of Kaiserslautern, Germany has been using LASCAD for several years in the design of diode pumped high power picosecond lasers and amplifiers. Studies have shown a close agreement between simulations performed using LASCAD and the performance of the lasers in practice.

LASCAD GUI with ABCD Matrix Code

  • GUI (Graphical User Interface).
  • ABCD matrix algorithm computes spot size and phase front curvature of transverse modes along the optical axis both inside and outside the cavity.
  • Easy-to-use graphical interface for inserting and defining optical elements, such as mirrors, dielectric interfaces, lenses and crystals.
  • Shows x and y axis profiles of fundamental and higher order Gaussian modes at individual positions along the optical axis.
  • Also shows the size and position of the beam waist and far field beam divergence.
  • Allows for astigmatism of optical elements to compute the mode shapes in x-z and y-z planes.
  • Shows stability diagram for the actual cavity configuration.
  • Computes beam quality M2 based on inserted apertures.

LASCAD with Finite Element Analysis (FEA)

  • Computes temperature distribution, deformation and stress in the laser crystal using 3D data of the absorbed pump light density and user-defined boundary conditions.
  • Selectable pre-designed laser, pump and cooling configurations and user-defined material properties.
  • FEA results are used with ABCD matrix code by multiplying the temperature distribution by the derivative of the refractive index versus temperature. The obtained refractive index distribution is fitted parabolically using the finite element mesh subdivisions. Also, for the deformed end faces of the crystal, a parabolic fit is carried through. The calculated parabolic parameters are used to compute the full round trip ABCD matrix.
  • Shows x and y axis profiles of fundamental and higher order Gaussian modes together with the transverse pump profile to visualise the overlap.
  • Computes laser power output using Gaussian mode shape and pump light distribution.
  • Interactive 3D visualiser shows temperature, stress, and pump light distributions.

LASCAD with Beam Propagation Method (BPM)

  • Fast Fourier Transform algorithm propagates the beam in small steps through the laser crystal. This takes into account the local refractive index distribution, the deformation of the crystal end faces and diffraction effects of intracavity optical elements, such as mirrors and lenses. It also allows for cavity misalignment.
  • Computes resonator eigenvalues and the shape of the eigenmodes.
  • Computes laser power output for non-parabolic mode shapes.
  • BPM uses the full 3D FEA results as input without paraboli.

LASCAD with Dynamic Multimode Analysis (DMA)

LASCAD is available with a new tool called Dynamic Multimode Analysis (DMA). The DMA code offers several important new features: 

  • Computation of shape and time-dependent power of a series of pulses from an actively Q-switched laser.
  • Computation of individual power output of transverse modes for CW and Q-switch operation.
  • Computation of the M2 factor beam quality for CW and Q-switch operation.
  • Effect of hard-edged and Gaussian apertures on beam quality.
  • Modelling based upon output mirrors with Supergaussian reflectivity profile is currently being implemented; modelling based upon mirrors with Gaussian reflectivity profile is already available from LASCAD.

Latest Update: LASCAD Version 3.6.4

LASCAD 3.6.4 offers a very useful new tool DMA for dynamic modeling of multimode and Q-switched operation taking into account graded reflectivity output mirrors. For further information, please download the 2013 LASCAD brochure.

Ordering Information

For pricing, please contact Pro-Lite. You may wish to use our convenient enquiry form. LASCAD is available as a basic (core) module with optional upgrades as shown below. Enhanced value pricing is offered to university researchers (please enquire).

LASCAD Module Description of Module
BPM BPM (Beam Propogation Method) code as upgrade to LASCAD Basic or LASCAD + FEA
DMA DMA (Dynamic Multimode Analysis) code as upgrade to LASCAD + FEA

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