Revealing the nature of morphological changes in carbon nanotube-polymer saturable absorber under high-power laser irradiation

Abstract

Composites of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) and water-soluble polymers (WSP) are the focus of significant worldwide research due to a number of applications in biotechnology and photonics, particularly for ultrashort pulse generation. Despite the unique possibility of constructing non-linear optical SWNT-WSP composites with controlled optical properties, their thermal degradation threshold and limit of operational power remain unexplored. In this study, we discover the nature of the SWNT-polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) film thermal degradation and evaluate the modification of the composite properties under continuous high-power ultrashort pulse laser operation. Using high-precision optical microscopy and micro-Raman spectroscopy, we have examined SWNT-PVA films before and after continuous laser radiation exposure (up to 40 hours) with a maximum optical fluence of 2.3 mJ·cm−2. We demonstrate that high-intensity laser radiation results in measurable changes in the composition and morphology of the SWNT-PVA film due to efficient heat transfer from SWNTs to the polymer matrix. The saturable absorber modification does not affect the laser operational performance. We anticipate our work to be a starting point for more sophisticated research aimed at the enhancement of SWNT-PVA films fabrication for their operation as reliable saturable absorbers in high-power ultrafast lasers.

Publication DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-24734-z
Divisions: Engineering & Applied Sciences
Engineering & Applied Sciences > Aston Institute of Photonics Technology
Engineering & Applied Sciences > Electrical, Electronic & Power Engineering
Additional Information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. Te images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. © The Author(s) 2018
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Related URLs: https://www.nat ... 598-018-24734-z (Publisher URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2018-05-10
Accepted Date: 2018-03-20
Authors: Chernysheva, Maria
Araimi, Mohammed Al
Rance, Graham A.
Weston, Nicola J.
Shi, Baogui
Saied, Sayah
Sullivan, John L.
Marsh, Nicholas
Rozhin, Aleksey

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