Class 3R Laser
| | Re: Do green lasers burn the best?
Here's a quick summary:
PER PHOTON violet carries the most energy in the visible spectrum, red the least per photon
PER MILLIWATT of laser light, the same amount of energy is transmitted from the laser in the same time.
A dark target will absorb a larger percentage of this total light output - though on most surfaces, a greater percentage of absorption happens with violet. You can improve this absorption by darkening (sharpieing) the substance. "Green" coloured targets such as paper, are seen as green because they reflect a large percentage of green light, and so do not absorb very much of it. They should be burned using a different colour laser, or darkened with a Sharpie before burning. Same goes for other colours, but Violet can essentially burn better regardless.
One factor which is small but noticeable is that violet lasers will cause many targets to fluoresce. This glow is conversion/transformation of energy, and is not absorption - so fluorescent targets will be slightly harder to burn.
The main cause of "burning" is the total power absorbed, over the total area applied. If your laser can apply enough energy over a small enough area and have a great enough amount of energy absorbed per second, it will burn the target. This is where focusing and a steady hand come into play - when working with reasonable powers, an adjustable focus is necessary for good burning. Only higher-powered violets provide such a high energy density and high enough absorption to make focusing unnecessary (at least unless you consider lab systems, gas lasers and very high power alternatives).
The "best" burning laser will be one that takes all of these factors into account, along with price, convenience and safety. Only you can decide which is best in your situation.
If I use too many brackets (like this) then just ignore what's inside them...
Last edited by charliebruce; 05-27-2010 at 01:38 AM.