Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Kolis, Joseph W
There is great interest in obtaining coherent radiation in all regions of the optical spectrum. This dissertation explores the hydrothermal growth of crystals that function in two regions currently inaccessible by solid state devices. The first gap exists in the deep-UV region, particularly below 200 nm. Some materials such as LBO and BBO can generate coherent light at wavelengths as low as 205 nm. The growth of these materials was explored to investigate the feasibility of the hydrothermal method as a new technique for growing these crystals. Particular attention was paid to the descriptive chemistry surrounding these systems, and several novel structures were elucidated. The study was also extended to the growth of materials that could be used for the generation of coherent light as low as 155 nm. Novel synthetic schemes for Sr2Be2B2O7 and KBe2BO3F2 were developed and the growth of large crystals was explored. An extensive study of the structures, properties and crystal growth of related compounds, RbBe2BO3F2 and CsBe2BO3F2, was also undertaken. Optimization of a number of parameters within this family of compounds led to the hydrothermal growth of large, high quality single crystal at rates suitable for large-scale growth. The second gap in technology is in the area of high average power solid state lasers emitting in the 1 μm and eye-safe (>1.5 μm) regions. A hydrothermal technique was developed to grow high quality crystals of Sc2O3 and Sc2O3 doped with suitable lanthanide activator ions. Preliminary spectroscopic studies were performed and large crystals were again grown at rates suitable for commercial production. The synthesis of ultra-high purity Ln2O3 (Ln = Sc, Y, La-Lu) nanoparticles was also explored to advance the development of ceramic-based solid state lasers.
Crystal growth is a complex task involving a great number of intricacies that must be understood and balanced. This dissertation has advanced the art and science of growing crystals, and documented the development of large, high quality crystals of advanced optical materials The materials and hydrothermal crystal growth techniques developed over the course of this work represent important progress toward controlling the optical spectrum.
Mcmillen, Colin, "Hydrothermal Crystal Growth of Oxides for Optical Applications" (2007). All Dissertations. 56.