Stefan Hengesbach Receives WLT Award 2015

Dr. Stefan Hengesbach develops optical concepts for diode laser modules for more efficient processes. (Source: Fh.-ILT)

Dr. Stefan Hengesbach develops optical concepts for diode laser modules for more efficient processes. (Source: Fh.-ILT)

On June 22, 2015 the Wissenschaftliche Gesellschaft Lasertechnik e.V. (WLT) [Scientific Society for Laser Technology] conferred Dr.-Ing. Stefan Hengesbach with the 2015 WLT Award. The award ceremony took place during the WLT Award Ceremony & Plenary Session at the “Lasers in Manufacturing conference – LIM 2015”, held as part of the Laser World of Photonics in Munich.

As one of two winners he received the WLT Award, endowed with €2,000, for his extraordinary scientific achievements in the field of laser technology, which go beyond purely scientific work. The WLT has set itself an ambitious goal: developing laser radiation as a universal tool and making it usable for new interdisciplinary fields of application in optical technologies. Every year, the society confers the WLT Award for outstanding achievements in the field of applied laser research and to promote young scientists in the field of laser technology.

Since he began studying at RWTH Aachen University, Dr. Hengesbach has extensively dealt with thermal, electrical and optical concepts for diode laser modules, frequency stabilization and tight spectral multiplexing. Within the last six years he has developed pioneering concepts in this field to significantly increase beam density and brilliance with great relevance for commercial use.

The frequency-stabilized diode laser sources Hengesbach developed can be used to pump new laser media with narrowband absorption band < 0.5 nm and to increase the efficiency of existing laser systems. In the end, Hengesbach has made it possible to increase beam density by up to two orders of magnitude through frequency multiplexing, i.e. the superposition of the frequency-stabilized laser radiation of several diode laser beam sources. Soon, the large electro-optical conversion efficiency and the diversity of available wavelengths of the diode laser will be available for applications with high demands on the beam density in the range up to 107 mm-2 sr-1. With this, Hengesbach has provided a solution for making it possible to effectively use a majority of the power of high-power lasers. Examples of applications are Selective Laser Melting (SLM) and the cutting of steel sheets.

In October 2014, Hengesbach concluded his doctoral thesis – “Spectral stabilization and incoherent superposition of diode laser radiation with volume diffraction gratings” – with distinction. At the RWTH Aachen University, in addition, he has strongly committed himself as a lecturer as well as at various events for pupils and students. These include for example, taking care of the Photonics Academy, the School and Children’s University or the video projects for the Photonics Campus.

Dr. Ulf Quentin, a former employee of the Department of Photonic Technology at the Bayerisches Laserzentrum BLZ, was also honored for his outstanding work in the field of laser-based nanostructuring with optically positioned microlenses. (Source: Fh. ILT)

Links: Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT, Aachen, Germany

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