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Old 12-08-2010, 01:18 PM #1
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Default Laser for particle visualization

Hello,

I work for a company that makes electrical heaters and we have created a room for testing and benchmarking. We are using a dust like particle that is neutrally buoyant (it is actually what they use to make snow in movies). We thought that shining one of those construction laser levels at the particles would be sufficient for flow visualization. Well we were wrong. That laser is way too weak and we need something better. So here is where we need help. There is no engineer here that has any working or hobby knowledge on lasers. I have taken a look at some of the lasers that are for sale but most of them are way too powerful (do not want to puncture or burn anything). Also we need one that has the options for different head effects (bouncing lasers, line effects, etc). I was thinking something like what you in clubs and bars. Any pointers?

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Old 12-27-2010, 04:58 AM #2
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Default Re: Laser for particle visualization

Hello sorry for the late response. I am still unclear as to what you need the visualization for, but the "snow" stuff you are using seems to be too large. You want to get more of a smoke, and actually a smoke machine from your local party store should work nicely. These particles are much much smaller and will help your laser show up in the room.
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Old 12-27-2010, 05:13 AM #3
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Default Re: Laser for particle visualization

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Originally Posted by SAS View Post
Hello,

I work for a company that makes electrical heaters and we have created a room for testing and benchmarking. We are using a dust like particle that is neutrally buoyant (it is actually what they use to make snow in movies). We thought that shining one of those construction laser levels at the particles would be sufficient for flow visualization. Well we were wrong. That laser is way too weak and we need something better. So here is where we need help. There is no engineer here that has any working or hobby knowledge on lasers. I have taken a look at some of the lasers that are for sale but most of them are way too powerful (do not want to puncture or burn anything). Also we need one that has the options for different head effects (bouncing lasers, line effects, etc). I was thinking something like what you in clubs and bars. Any pointers?

Thanks
You know it's going to be hard to be able to see air flow from just a single laser.

You'll want green "532nm" so your eye sees it best Or you would want Light Blue "445nm" to see it reflect off the White best and still be able to see it. To be able to see it with your eyes best you might want to get like a 50-100mW "532nm" or a 400-600mW "445nm" Ether Way you Might want to have a Beam Expander added to it. That might give you a thick enough beam to see particle flow.

All lasers will Bounce off a mirrored or reflective surface. You might want to get some diffraction gratings to make your "line effects etcs".

I wouldn't worry about burning anything in a controlled environment. You should get eye protection for others around the area as well.

Last edited by Krogith; 12-27-2010 at 05:24 AM.
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Old 12-27-2010, 05:26 AM #4
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Default Re: Laser for particle visualization

^For those powers though you'll need safety goggles, which defeats the purpose.
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Old 12-27-2010, 05:28 AM #5
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Default Re: Laser for particle visualization

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^For those powers though you'll need safety goggles, which defeats the purpose.
They should be filming this whole thing at this point. So the cameras should pick it up.
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Old 12-27-2010, 06:16 PM #6
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Default Re: Laser for particle visualization

try the 50mw green laser on amazon.com

they have sever sellers from $11-16

and it isent a laser that will burn or anything but is great at night time and in dusty rooms
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Old 12-27-2010, 08:56 PM #7
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Default Re: Laser for particle visualization

Wouldn't a blu-ray work the best because it would make the particle floress?
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Old 12-29-2010, 06:30 PM #8
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Default Re: Laser for particle visualization

Why don't you darken the room and put some blacklights up?
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Old 12-30-2010, 04:45 PM #9
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Default Re: Laser for particle visualization

Well any of the 445nm diode lasers should work great. When defocused they have a natural fan shape, real wide but thin. This would make a great laser wall of sorts.
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