Up to now, the method of slow mixture renewal is always used to obtain long lifetime stable operation for most of the high power transverse flow or fast axial flow CO2 lasers. Consumption of helium is ~100 liters/h for a 5-kW CO2 laser. The cost of He consumption will be U.S. $50,000/yr if the laser is used in a production line in China.

© 1990 Optical Society of America

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