Gamma radiation effects in Yb-doped optical fiber

B. P. Fox, Z. V. Schneider, K. Simmons-Potter, W. J. Thomes, D. C. Meister, R. P. Bambha, D. A.V. Kliner, M. J. Söderlund

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

22 Scopus citations


Determination of the radiation response of doped-fiber laser materials, systems and components to relevant ionizing radiation fluxes is central to the prediction of long-term fiber-based laser performance/survivability in adverse and/or space-based environments. It is well known that optical elements that are placed into orbit around the Earth experience harsh radiation environments that originate from trapped-particle belts, cosmic rays, and solar events. Of particular interest to optical materials is the continuous flux of gamma photons that the materials encounter. Such radiation exposure commonly leads to the formation of color centers in a broad range of optical materials. Such color center formation gives rise to changes in optical transmission, loss and luminescent band structure, and, thus, impacts long-term optical device performance. In this paper we will present the results of our investigation of gamma-radiation-induced photodarkening on the passive optical transmittance of a number of ytterbium- (Yb-) doped optical fibers. We will discuss the evolution of the optical response of the fiber across the 1.0 to 1.6 micron wavelength window with increasing gamma exposure. Results indicate that these fibers exhibit reasonable radiation resistance to gamma exposures typical of a 5-year, low-earth-orbit environment. Maximum transmittance losses of less than 10% were observed for total gamma exposures of 2-5 krad (Si).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationFiber Lasers IV
Subtitle of host publicationTechnology, Systems, and Applications
StatePublished - 2007
EventFiber Lasers IV: Technology, Systems, and Applications - San Jose, CA, United States
Duration: Jan 22 2007Jan 25 2007

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X


OtherFiber Lasers IV: Technology, Systems, and Applications
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Jose, CA


  • Gamma irradiation
  • Photodarkening
  • Radiation effects
  • Radiation-induced absorption
  • Rare-earth doped fibers
  • Yb-doped fibers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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