Improving solar-pumped laser efficiency by a ring-array concentrator

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We report here a compact pumping scheme for achieving large improvement in collection and conversion efficiency of a Nd:YAG solar-pumped laser by an innovative ring-array solar concentrator. An aspheric fused silica lens was used to further concentrate the solar radiation from the focal region of the 1.5-m-diameter ring-array concentrator to a 5.0-mm-diameter, 20-mm-length Nd:YAG single-crystal rod within a conical-shaped pump cavity, enabling multipass pumping to the laser rod. 67.3-W continuous-wave solar laser power was numerically calculated, corresponding to 38.2-W / m2 solar laser collection efficiency, being 1.22 and 1.27 times more than the state-of-the-art records by both heliostat-parabolic mirror and Fresnel lens solar laser systems, respectively. 4.0% conversion efficiency and 0.021-W brightness figure of merit were also numerically obtained, corresponding to 1.25 and 1.62 times enhancement over the previous records, respectively. The influence of tracking error on solar laser output power was also analyzed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number018002
JournalJournal of Photonics for Energy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018


  • Concentrator
  • Laser
  • Nd:YAG
  • Ring-array
  • Solar-pumped

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