First test on the new CO2 laser

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First test on the new CO2 laser

Post  Alessio on Tue Mar 16, 2010 6:35 pm

On friday 12th march, I installed the new CO2 laser from Access Laser Co. It is a Merit-S, pre-stabilized, temperature tuned CO2 laser. Both the laser and the RF driver are water cooled. I connected the laser body temperature sensor to the auxiliary input of the chiller, to directly stabilize the laser temperature.
After switching on the laser, it takes approximately half an hour to stabilize. Maximum power is 9.4W.
I placed a 3" focal lenght lens approximately 40cm from the laser output and the Primes beam profiler at 45cm from the lens. This is necessary to increase the size of the beam, since the beam profiler cannot measure beams smaller than 10mm in diameter.

First figure shows the measured beam intensity distribution: it is fairly good. Second and third images show the profiles in the X and Y directions respectively together with Gaussian fits. The beam radius measured by the profiler agrees very well with the results from the fit: Primes (wx=7.33mm and wy=7.66mm); Gaussian fit (wx=7.16mm and wy=7.60mm). As a final crosscheck, I propagated the beam from the laser to the profiler using ABCD matrices and Gaussian optics: for an input beam of w0=(1.2 - 1.3)mm I get w1=(7.2 - 7.5)mm.


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