R&D 100 winner of the day: High Energy, Low Dispersion (HELD) Multilayer Dielectric (MLD) Gratings
Aug 20, 2023
By Heather Hall | July 25, 2023
Next-generation laser systems are necessary for high-energy-density physics research to enable the study of astrophysical and quantum phenomena difficult to replicate in a laboratory setting. Systems must compress and augment extraordinary energies while limiting physical damage incurred with each beam pulse for these experiments to succeed. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s HELD Gratings, a novel design of multi-layer dielectric pulse compression gratings, enables a new class of high-energy 10 PW ultrafast laser systems. The technology enables extremely high and unprecedented peak power, and meter-scale HELD Gratings could facilitate future 100 PW class ultrafast laser systems. The design can handle 3.4x the incident energy level of previous gratings, allowing the ELI Beamlines L4-ATON laser system to generate an unprecedented 10 PW of power, 1.5 kJ in 150 fs pulses, making possible previously unfeasible research. Components used at the energies required to observe and characterize quantum phenomena must perform under extreme conditions. With their improvements in materials and design, HELD gratings afford investigators unparalleled access to new realms of high-energy research benefiting cosmological advances, medical imaging, and national security capabilities.
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s