Hollow core waveguide as mid-infrared laser modal beam filter
A novel method for mid-IR laser beam mode cleaning employing hollow core waveguide as a modal filter element is reported. The influence of the input laser beam quality on fiber optical losses and output beam profile using a hollow core waveguide with 200 μm-bore size was investigated. Our results demonstrate that even when using a laser with a poor spatial profile, there will exist a minimum fiber length that allows transmission of only the Gaussian-like fundamental waveguide mode from the fiber, filtering out all the higher order modes. This essentially single mode output is preserved also when the waveguide is bent to a radius of curvature of 7.5 cm, which demonstrates that laser mode filtering can be realized even if a curved light path is required.