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Old 04-22-2012, 09:53 PM #1
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Question Any ideas on Optical Cells?

I would like to do some experiments with optical cells. Basically, this is just a liquid container that you shine a laser beam through. I have found some on Ebay but most are pricey and kind of small. I was wondering if anyone here had experience building such things? Got any tutorials?

My optical cell should be about 8" square and about half an inch tall (I could go with other sizes). This would allow me to put some first surface mirrors on two sides and have the beam travel back and forth in a zig zag fashion before exiting. This way I get as much beam as possible going through the liquid.

My concerns are that regular glass has no anti glare coating (which means loss) and may not pass the wavelengths I want to use, which are Green 532 nm and Near Infra Red at 810 nm.

Any ideas where I might find optical glass sheet with anti glare coating? Would some kind of plastic work?
Comments? Ideas?



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Old 04-27-2012, 03:10 PM #2
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Default Re: Any ideas on Optical Cells?

You could design it so that the reflection angles are shallow to reduce reflective losses without coatings. You'd need to get creative with the wall that you introduce the laser into the container through. Also remember that whatever liquid you use will have an effect on how the light refracts or reflects at the wall-liquid interface.

Experiment with a glass table and some goggles. Shine the laser straight down and see how most of the light goes through. Now shine the laser at a very shallow angle and see how much of the light actually reflects.

I would assume that glass can transmit 810nm since we often see wavelengths as high as 1064nm coming out of green pointers. If you find out what kind of glass you have, there is probably information on the web about transmission of varying wavelengths.

Perhaps if you just had some cheap first surface mirrors and just submerged them in the tank, you wouldn't have to worry so much about what the tank was made of.
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Old 04-28-2012, 08:14 PM #3
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Default Re: Any ideas on Optical Cells?

How about a plastic tank and fit small (low cost) windows in each end of the tank.
Mirrors then could be mounted external to the tank.
If you are carefull, you might be able to make the ends of the tank at the brewster angle so you in effect have a cavity with brewster windows and the optics easilly accesable on the outside?
Just an idea.

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