Compiled by Laureen Belleville, email@example.com
Pulsed fiber laser
In an expansion of its family of pulsed fiber lasers, Aculight Corp. (Bothell, WA; www.aculight.com) now offers the polarized eye-safe Picasso Model PF1550PM-30 and the one-micron laser Picasso Model PF1060-40. The former produces 4- to 6-ns pulses at repetition rates from 50 kHz with 1W average power. It generates maximum pulse energy of 20 μJ at 50 kHz. The unit’s 1.54 μm output is diffraction limited. The latter generates 3- to 5-ns pulses at repetition rates between 100 kHz and 1 MHz. It produces up to 10 W of average power at a repetition rate of 1 MHz and maximum peak powers of 30 kW. The unit’s output is less than 1.4 times the diffraction limit. All Picasso units measure 3.5 x 11 x 13 inches and weigh 16 pounds or less.
UV fiber laser system
Delivering scalable power in excess of 1W, the UVPower266, from Fianium Ltd. (Southampton, U.K.; www.fianium.com), operates at 266 nm and demonstrates all of the advantages of fiber lasers. Weighing less than 4 kg and with a footprint of 350 x 60 mm, the optical head is one-tenth the size and weight of comparable solid-state UV sources, according to the company. Incorporating proprietary beam delivery optics, the system removes the need for beam steering optics enabling direct-beam positioning with excellent beam quality and pointing stability.
Nutfield Technology (Windham, NH; www.nutfieldtech.com) offers the XLR8-15 two-axis scan head, which it claims offers higher performance in a smaller package at a lower price. It reportedly is designed to ease integration and manufacturing issues by reducing the need for specialized tooling and highly skilled assemblers. The product features the company’s QuantumScan-10 galvanometers with ceramic rotor technology. Marking speeds of 400 characters per second are typical. The scan heads can be configured for a variety of laser wavelengths and are available with digital and analog electrical interface options.
Single-emitter diode laser
A near-infrared diode laser from nLight Corp. (Vancouver, WA; www.nlight.net) emits 7W continuous-wave power at 808 nm from a single, 200-micron broad area emitter utilizing the company’s proprietary BrightLife semiconductor laser technology. Available in C-Mount or High Heat Load (HHL) package, this 808nm, multimode diode laser reportedly is an ideal pump source for solid-state lasers used for industrial and medical applications. The device has an operating current of 6.5A and compliance voltage of 1.90V. Beam divergence is <36 degrees x <10 degrees FWHM. The company can collimate the fast-axis to <1 degree FWHM.
Intended for high-throughput, precision micromachining, the PRISMA 1064-32-V from Coherent Inc. (Santa Clara, CA; www.coherent.com) delivers a mix of high peak power, short pulsewidth, high average power, and exquisite beam quality. This diode-pumped, solid-state, Nd:YVO4 laser produces 30 W at 1064 nm in a TEM00 beam, with a pulsewidth as short as 18 ns and pulse repetition rates from 20 to 100 kHz. For applications that benefit from longer pulses, the PRISMA LP versions are offered. The product is available with a number of accessory options, including a beam expander, visible aiming beam, and mounting flange for scanner optics.
High-resolution, low-cost linear stages to 8 feet long have been introduced by H2W Technologies Inc. (Valencia, CA; www.h2wtech.com). According to the company, these 1.0 micron resolution stages feature long life without the need of adjustment, lubrication, or maintenance. The integration of a splined linear guide and leadscrew results in a torsionally stiff stage that can be operated in either a horizontal or vertical axis. Designed for loads up to 100 pounds and speeds to 30 in/second, the stages can be specified in compound multi-axis configurations such as an X-Y-Z axis gantry robot.
Industrial diode laser architecture
JDSU (San Jose, CA; www.jdsu.com) has announced the IDL 100, an Industrial Diode Laser System (IDL) architecture that incorporates multiple single-emitter diodes combined into a single output fiber, and provides up to 100 watts of power. According to the company, high lifetime and reliability coupled with a uniform top hat beam profile are advantages in applications such as selective laser soldering and plastic welding. The IDL products are used for plastic welding if exhuast manifolds, key bobs, CV joints, light-weight plastic gasoline tanks, and many other plastic parts needed in automobile production. This 100W version is expected to enable plastic welding of components with high glass content, parts with low absorption, and/or allow for greater production throughput.
Short-pulse fiber laser
VPFL lasers from V-gen Ltd. (Ramat-Gan, Israel; www.vgen.com) are short-pulse, Ytterbium fiber lasers in MOPA configuration. The system’s TTL and USB control interfaces (for PC-application) can be used to operate and tune the various laser parameters (output power, pulse energy, repetition rate, and pulsewidth). A sealed system in an all-fiber configuration, the VPFL is housed in a robust assembly that meets industrial standards. A reinforced or armored fiber cable delivers the output beam. V-gen also offers output collimators and focusers as optional units. Applications include marking, materials processing, micromachining, welding, and others.
CO2 laser system
A 10W sealed beam RF-excited CO2 laser system, the LP8010 from Worldwide Laser Services Corp. (Gilbert, AZ; www.wlsc.com) includes a galvo head for beam steering, the Zap-IT laser controller software, a mounting rail, a dust cover, and a choice of different focal length final focus optics. Also included in the system is a computer for laser control or the option of a Zap-Alone controller allowing laser operations with no computer. According to the company, the system is ideal for laser marking, etching, and cutting. Expected operating lifetime before recharge is 30,000 hours of operations. It carries a warranty of 24 months on the laser tube.