Passive nonlinear absorptive limiters offer an effective means to protect human eyes and other focal-plane sensors from damage by pulsed laser radiation. New device designs are proposed in which dye molecules are driven into strong ground-state depletion by the incoming threat pulse while the internal fluence values are kept below the material failure level. Pulse-energy suppression ratios greater than 104 for 10-ns pulses together with linear transmission greater than 70% should be possible with existing dyes.
© 1994 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: July 12, 1993
Revised Manuscript: April 29, 1994
Published: October 20, 1994
Perry A. Miles, "Bottleneck optical limiters: the optimal use of excited-state absorbers," Appl. Opt. 33, 6965-6979 (1994)