Tip: “Worst Case” Combinations of Laser Parameters – Watch Out!

Customer Service Department, Ophir Optronics

Very often, a laser spec gives a range of values for various parameters – “Power from X to Y, Beam Diameter from…to…,” and so on. Now we need to measure the laser beam and we need to choose the right sensor. Let’s say the laser spec says:

  • Pulse energy: 1mJ – 100J
  • Pulse rate: 1Hz – 1KHz

We might be cautious and look for a sensor that can handle all of those numbers...but wait. 100J pulses at 1KHz – that means the average power is 100KW! Is that really the average power of my beam?

Though Ophir has a sensor that can measure 100KW, in this case it’s probably NOT what you really need.

When looking for a sensor to measure a beam whose specs are given as ranges of values (think of the specs in a typical laser system brochure), don’t just "copy-paste" those specs into the Sensor Finder. Consider the actual worst-case combinations of parameters that you’ll really need to measure, and enter those into the Sensor Finder.

This is discussed in more detail in a new video on our website.

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