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Water Soluble Crystals

#0223


Development of Single-Sector, Rapid-Growth Technologies for Production of Water Soluble Crystals.

Tech Area / Field

  • MAT-SYN/Materials Synthesis and Processing/Materials

Status
8 Project completed

Registration date
24.07.1994

Completion date
28.04.1999

Senior Project Manager
Kondratenkov Yu B

Leading Institute
Russian Academy of Sciences / Institute of Applied Physics, Russia, N. Novgorod reg., N. Novgorod

Supporting institutes

  • VNIIEF, Russia, N. Novgorod reg., Sarov

Collaborators

  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, USA, CA, Livermore\nCEA / DAM / CE Limeil-Velenton, France, Limeil-Valenton\nCrismatec, France, Paris\nInstitute of Material Science, Spain, Barselona\nKortu Kristalle GmbH, Germany, ??

Project summary

The proposed project is aimed at developing an efficient and economic technology for fast growth of large, single-sector KDP (KH2PO4) crystals which are used in control elements and frequency converters of powerful, wide-aperture laser systems. At present optical elements made from such crystals are needed, primarily, for conversion of radiation to the second and third harmonics in lasers designed for inertial confinement fusion. About 200 such elements with an aperture of 270ґ270 mm are used in the "Nova" laser system operating at LLNL. Current plans are to utilize about 900 elements each with an aperture of 400ґ400 mm in the National Ignition Facility (NIF) the successor to Nova. The production of these crystals using traditional methods requires a large number of growth stations, each with a growth cycle of 2 - 3 years. In addition, fabrication of elements using these crystals involves substantial waste of material. As a result fabrication of crystal elements is a very expensive process. A technology which reduced waste and provided a shorter fabrication cycle would significantly reduce crystal costs. Such a laboratory technology was conceived of and developed over the last ten years in IAP RAS, Nizhny Novgorod. At present this technology provides crystals with a cross-section of 270ґ270 mm grown with the geometry of the final element.

The Russian Federal Nuclear Center (RFNC-AUSRIEP) has gained rich experience in the exploration and application of large-aperture monocrystal elements of laser radiation control. In particular, the "Iskra-4" setup has supplied the highest second harmonic radiation power of the iodine laser. The methods and equipment for testing the crystal quality have been developed. Thus all the opportunities are provided in IAP RAS and RFNC-AUSPIER to solve the stated problem. IAP and RFNC have all the necessary starting conditions (premises, equipment for investigating, growing and testing the crystals, scientific and engineering personnel) to address the issues associated with rapid crystal growth technology and single-sector growth of crystal elements for ICF and other (e. g., technological) laser systems.

The collaboration in the frames of the Project with LLNL will contribute to quantitative investigations of the crystal quality under the NIF conditions which guarantees the compliance of the developed technology with the most promising high-energy laser systems.

Previously, the research scientists of IAP (Laboratory of Water Soluble Crystals) and RFNC performed joint investigations dealt with problems of controlling powerful laser radiation used in military detection and communication systems, with testing and development of nuclear ammunition. Therefore, the proposed Project will contribute to the reorientation of research activities of former weapons scientists to the solution of peaceful humanitarian problems as well as to the integration of researchers, scientists and engineers of the former Soviet Union into the world scientific community.


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