A diode pumped, high power (at least 20W), short pulse (up to 2 ps), chirped pulse amplified laser using Yb:YAG as the gain material is employed for material processing. Yb:YAG is used as the gain medium for both a regenerative amplifier and a high power 4-pass amplifier. A single common reflective grating optical device is used to both stretch pulses for amplification purposes and to recompress amplified pulses before being directed to a workpiece.
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.