CO2 Laser offers ultra-short, high-peak-power pulses.

Press Release Summary:

DIAMOND(TM) GEM Q-400 Q-switched CO2 laser produces 15W avg power at 50 kHz repetition rate and 9.25 micons wavelength. It features 2.5 kW peak power with pulse widths controllable to less than 150 ns and peak pulse energies to over 400 microjoules. RF-excited waveguide oscillator is sealed in all-metal housing. Laser is designed for drilling and micromachining applications including PCB microvia drilling, flex circuit machining and plastics processing.

Original Press Release:

Coherent-DEOS Introduces World's First Introduces Q-Switched CO2 Laser

GEM Q-400 Combines Robust Sealed Package with Ultra-Short, High-Peak-Power Pulses

Bloomfield, Conn., January 22, 2002 - Coherent-DEOS, a member of the Coherent Photonics Group (Santa Clara, CA) (Nasdaq:COHR), introduces the DIAMOND(TM) GEM Q-400-the world's first industrial Q-switched CO2 laser. Combining ultra-short, high-peak-power pulses with a rugged, sealed package, the GEM Q-400 is ideal for drilling and micromachining applications, including PCB microvia drilling, flex circuit machining and plastics processing. Coherent will feature the GEM Q-400 at Photonics West booth #922 in San Jose, California, January 22-24, 2002.

"The GEM Q-400 is based on Coherent's patented Q-switch technology, which allows you to get short, high-energy pulses at high repetition rates with very high peak power from a compact and completely sealed package," said Sri Venkat, business development manager for Coherent's Advanced Packaging and Interconnects business unit. "That means, particularly in
micromachining applications, you can remove materials quicker without causing collateral thermal damage. This is a first for CO2 lasers and is the fundamental advantage of the Q-400. It
offers the highest quality materials processing with a CO2 laser to date."

"Coherent's DIAMOND K-Series lasers already dominate a number of precision machining markets," said Paul Sechrist, vice president for Coherent's Advanced Packaging and Interconnects business unit. "This is especially true in the PCB microvia market. We're very proud of the acceptance of the K-Series. The addition of the DIAMOND GEM Q-400 further enhances the quality and speed of our partners' systems, which in turn increases production
throughput. The GEM Q-400 has been in field use on a limited basis since March 2000 with very positive results. A number of papers and articles based on the enhanced benefits of this
technology have been published. As you can see, we are very excited about the potential benefits."

The GEM Q-400 produces 15W average power at 50 kHz repetition rate and 9.25 microns wavelength. It features 2.5 kW peak power with pulse widths controllable to less than 150 ns, peak pulse energies to over 400 microjoules, and repetition rates to 150 kHz. These unique characteristics are particularly important for applications such as PCB microvia drilling, where the laser techniques currently used leave charring or residue on the circuit board. Since the GEM Q-400 combines narrow-width high-energy pulses with high rep rates, and a wavelength well
matched to PCB dielectric materials, it processes cleanly and precisely without leaving any residue behind.

With its RF-excited waveguide oscillator sealed in an all-metal housing, the GEM Q-400 has been optimized for the most demanding manufacturing environments. Moreover, this robust construction positions the unit for an expected field lifetime of more than 15,000 hours.

"The bottom line is that this technology combines all the advantages of sealed industrial CO2 lasers with the benefits of Q-switch laser technology," said Venkat. "It stretches the capabilities of CO2 lasers beyond their current horizons to give industrial users an option that falls between precision UV laser solutions and current CO2 technology. In this way, it meets current processing challenges while opening up new markets to laser processing."

Originally founded in 1994 as DeMaria ElectroOptics Systems Inc. (DEOS). DEOS was acquired by Coherent Inc. in April 2001. Coherent-DEOS designs and manufactures carbon-dioxide lasers used in materials processing, electronics packaging, and research applications. The acquisition further enhanced Coherent's CO2 laser portfolio, making the company the only
manufacturer to offer a line of sealed CO2 lasers ranging in power from 25W to 500W.

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