The work in this thesis is a study of excimer laser
induced damage in optical materials. This includes
characterization of the focused laser radiation,
development of sensitive techniques for the early
detection of laser damage and finally laser damage studies
at 193 nm and 248 nm in crystalline materials, metal
mirrors and dielectric coatings.
Characterization of the focused laser radiation
involved pulse energy, temporal pulse profile and spatial
profile measurements. This was assisted by development of
a laser attenuator using a variable length liquid cell
with a dynamic range of 25 dB. Non-linear absorption
phenomena were observed in liquids at high intensities.
Beam profiling methods were used to show the intensity
distribution in the focal region of a lens was
reproducible and approximated to a 2-D Gaussian function [continued]…
A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.