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John McCauley, Product Specialist, Ophir Photonics Group
echnological advancements in laser sources and the systems in which they are integrated have provided the industrial laser user with higher quality and more consistent laser processes. Laser OEMs and systems integrators continue to make improvements in their products and services thanks to partnerships with system component manufacturers, laser applications development houses, and end users...
Mark Slutzki, Product Manager, Ophir Photonics

Introduction

Because a laser beam provides a vehicle for delivering energy in such a precisely controlled way, and without physical contact, it’s not surprising that the laser has found so much use in medical applications.

It’s used as a surgical tool (Fig. 1), cutting through various types of tissue in place of the traditional scalpel, and simultaneously cauterizing blood vessels as it goes, so that bleeding is minimized....

Mark Slutzki Product manager

High power laser systems are making their way into more and more industrial applications. From cutting steel, to drilling via holes in silicon, to marking plastic, a whole range of processes now make use of the laser to produce results not previously practical. Advances in fiber lasers in particular, with their scalability, beam quality and wall-plug efficiency, have made laser beams with powers of many tens of KW a common tool available to commercial users. Even...

by Lawrence Green Ophir-Spiricon, LLC

Acrylic Mode Burns have historically been universally used because they are the lowest cost alternative to the budget-minded end user. This method, however has been cited for producing dangerous, cancer-causing airborne materials, and is not a real time technology. On the other hand, Real-time beam profiling has been historically too expensive for the average user to acquire.

We discuss a new technology that enables the design of a new low-cost real time CO2 high power beam profiler that is within...

The FL250A-LP1-DIF-33 is specified over the range 0.4um – 3um. However, as the spec points out, it is only calibrated at 3 specific wavelengths (532nm, 755nm, 1064nm); what if your laser is "none of the above", say, Erbium at 2940nm?

The FL250A-LP1-DIF-33 uses the LP1 absorber, whose spectral response is not flat, and also has an alumina diffuser – whose spectral response is also not flat. Although we do have the full measured curve as part of the regular...

BeamGage has the ability to lock out the ability to make changes to the settings in case you inadvertently change something you shouldn't have, or if you want to lock out operators in a production environment from making changes that violate testing procedures

To do this, click on the application icon in the upper left corner of the application and then click on the Options button next to the Exit button. In the dialog box that pops up on the left side click the Privileges item....

Questions like these are common, given the sheer number of parameters Ophir's BeamGage software calculates from each beam profile. When faced with all these various metrics, it's natural to wonder which ones are more important or if one parameter is the best one to describe your laser.

The challenge is, all lasers are different and so one parameter that describes a laser well in one instance is not very important in another. In this particular example, "goodness of fit...

John McCauley, Product Specialist, Ophir Photonics Group

By John McCauley, Product Specialist, Ophir Photonics Group

Most anyone working with lasers today will tell you that it is an exciting field. Applications of coherent light at different wavelengths are ever increasing and show no signs of plateauing. The skills required to understand, troubleshoot, and correct problems with lasers, and the systems they are a part of, are in high demand. It's all part of an evolution whereby yesterday's laser technician has turned into today...

Proper alignment of the MS-1780 is essential for its operation, and this can occasionally seem difficult to achieve. Here is a simple method for making sure the system is properly aligned to get the “first light” conditions that will allow easy fine tuning for experimental results.

In order for the system to work properly the laser beam needs to enter the optical center of the aperture on the horizontal axis of the instrument. In order to be able to fine-adjust the beam it is useful to use steering mirrors to direct the...

The selection of a sensor to accurately measure the power of a laser or energy of a pulsed laser can seem like a simple and easy procedure. However, many times the selection process is limited to choosing a sensor that only meets the range of power or energy to be measured, leaving out several other essential criteria of the laser specifications; that without their consideration, can allow the wrong sensor to be selected, the laser to be measured inaccurately and likely to cause the sensor to fail prematurely.

Watch Our Laser Measurement Video

John McCauley, Product Specialist, Ophir Photonics Group

Having worked in laser marking and engraving for several years, I can say that there is a certain mindset when it comes to laser quality that, in some cases, could be a dangerous one, especially in industrial applications. The mindset is, “If the laser is making a mark, then why check the performance of the laser?” Let’s discuss this as it relates to several different laser applications, including why this mindset could be causing you to lose time and money.

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This document was created to assist our valued customers in the proper care and maintenance of Ophir thermal laser power sensors. The following information is for reference only. If you have any reason to believe that the sensor is no longer performing within the original specifications,we always recommend that you send it in for repair and/or recalibration by our trained technicians to bring the unit back to the proper NIST traceable standards. We believe that Ophir thermal sensors can be used for many years without any repairs when used with the proper laser optical setup. We hope that this document will enable you to also enjoy the long life and reliable results for which Ophir-Spiricon is known.

Dr. Ephraim Greenfield

This document discusses the interpretation and basis for stated measurement accuracy of Ophir Laser Power/Energy meters.
1. General Discussion
2. Combination of Errors and Total Error
3. Analysis of Power and Energy Calibration Errors
4. Detailed Analysis of Power and Energy Calibration Errors

Dr. Efi Rotem

In many industries LEDs are replacing traditional broadband light sources such as mercury, deuterium, Xenon, and quartz-halogen lamps. Systems and applications transitioning to LEDs are reengineered in terms of optics, electronics, heat management and more. Similarly, the equipment used by professionals to measure the output of these sources needs to be fitted for measuring LEDs.

Measuring lasers can be a daunting task, particularly as the power or energy levels get higher. Many applications require that precise information about laser beam sizes be known, but these lasers may be capable of damaging the profilers. The slit-based profiler, such as the Photon NanoScan is ideally suited for measuring these higher power lasers, because it can accept a relatively high powered beam directly, without attenuation. Nonetheless there are limits. Determining these limits can be complicated, especially if the laser is operated...

By Allen Cary, Director of Marketing, Ophir-Spiricon

One of the laser’s most useful properties is that it can propagate over great distances defining a straight line, and many optical systems are designed to exploit this property. Therefore, beam profilers are often used to verify the performance of lasers and optical systems to avoid problems caused by bad alignment or to streamline the manufacturing processes of these devices. This is often a simple measurement of where in space a laser spot is...

By William Owens, Engineering Dept., Ophir-Spiricon, LLC

So how did this whole concept of an “Automation Interface” come about? Well, here is my short-short history on the topic. In the beginning, all programs were simple. Users had simple menus with a few equally simple commands. Most commands had shortcut-key combinations that were fun and easy to remember. The world was a wonderful place. Then somebody got the bright idea that adding “New Features” to an application was cool...

Allen M. Cary, Sales & Marketing Manager, Ophir-Photon LLC
When compared with the cost of Plexiglas blocks, burn papers, or even IR cards, a beam profiler may seem expensive. Almost anyone who has sold test equipment, at one time or another has heard the complaint from a potential customer, "It's too expensive!" In fact, almost anyone who has ever sold anything has heard this lament. In most sales training courses there is an extensive section on overcoming objections, and the most prominent objection discussed is always the "it's-too- expensive" objection...

BeamGage Professional and BeamGage Enterprise version 5.7 are supported with Automation via .Net components. Both include a LabVIEW example that can be run with the LabVIEW Run-Time Engine that is provided with the BeamGage software CD or available for free download from National Instruments.


Figure 1. BeamGage and LabVIEW.
 
The attached pages from the BeamGage User...

As the BeamScan products reach the end of their useful lifetime, we are often asked which NanoScan models most closely match an existing BeamScan model. There are far fewer configurations of NanoScan head than there were BeamScans, because some of the features that were hardwired into BeamScan models are software adjustable in the NanoScan.
 
For example, some BeamScans were wired to run at 5Hz, instead of...

Proper alignment of the MS-1780 is essential for its operation, and this can occasionally seem difficult to achieve. Here is a simple method for making sure the system is properly aligned to get the “first light” conditions that will allow easy fine tuning for experimental results.
 
In order for the system to work properly the laser beam needs to enter the optical center of the aperture on the horizontal axis of the instrument. In order to be able to fine-adjust the beam it is useful to use steering mirrors to direct...

We are frequently asked how one can output data from the NanoScan to other programs for additional analysis or publication. Depending nature of the desired end results there can be many answers to this question. In this application note we will try to explain these different solutions.
 
Active X
The NanoScan Pro analysis software program includes the Active X server. This allows the user to write programs and routines in a number of platforms, such as Visual Basic, LabVIEW, Excel and others, which will control the NanoScan...

In order to get proper results from the ModeScan 1780 beam profiler, it is necessary to understand which lens to use and where to locate it for particular parameters of the laser under test. The ModeScan 1780 calculator The calculator includes a worksheet that computes laser propagation parameters in...

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