August 11, 2022, Danville, VA – IRflex Corporation, has been awarded a United States Department of Defense Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II Contract entitled High Performance Optical Fibers for 100-Watts Infrared Lasers, with the amount over 866,000US$.
The objective of this contract is to develop a high performance, low loss (less than 0.5dB/m), infrared (IR) fiber technology for transmitting high power greater than 100 Watts CW from a multi-band mid-infrared laser for the wavelength from 2 to 6 micron. IRflex has successfully completed Phase I of the contract from December 1, 2020 to May 31, 2021), and another 4 months bridge option contract.
This PHASE II contract is to demonstrate production of usable lengths of mid-infrared fiber to transmit high power (> 100 Watts CW) laser output in the 2-6 micron region with less than 0.5dB/m loss and high material strength. The minimum requirement for the constructed and demonstrated fiber prototype is 25W of optical power transmission with low-loss (<0.5dB/m). The transmitted beam shape should be as close as possible to a smooth Gaussian beam, which would typically be launched into it. Survivability of fibers under representative stress should be demonstrated. Key factors for this fiber technology are reliability, reproducibility, cost, and transmission characteristics.