Motivation for this work includes observations at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory of a correlation between laser damage thresholds and both the absorption and the nodular-defect density of coatings. Activated oxygen is used to increase the metal-oxidation kinetics at the coated surface during electron-beam deposition. A series of hafnia layers are made with various conditions: two μ-wave configuations, two sources (hafnium and hafnia), and two reactive oxygen pressures. Laser damage thresholds (1064-nm, 10-ns pulses), absorption (at 511 nm), and nodular-defect densities from these coatings are reported. The damage thresholds are observed to increase as the absorption of the coatings decreases. However, no significant increase in damage thresholds are observed with the coatings made from a low nodular-defect density source material (hafnium). Hafnia coatings can be made from hafnium sources that have lower nodular-defect densities, lower absorption, and damage thresholds that are comparable with coatings made from a conventional hafnia source.
© 1993 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: November 18, 1992
Published: October 1, 1993
Robert Chow, Steve Falabella, Gary E. Loomis, Frank Rainer, Christopher J. Stolz, and Mark R. Kozlowski, "Reactive evaporation of low-defect density hafnia," Appl. Opt. 32, 5567-5574 (1993)