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Old 03-22-2015, 04:38 PM #1
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Default mirros suitable for lasers?

Are regular mirrors also not suitable for lasers like regular non-AR coated glasses/optics aren't?



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Old 03-22-2015, 05:12 PM #2
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

Regular mirrors will work, but they will not reflect as much light as mirrors designed for use with lasers.
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Old 03-23-2015, 02:12 AM #3
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

also since most mirrors are second surface the beam is distorted some after each reflection, increasing it's apparent divergence. the best for lasers are first surface mirrors

First surface mirror - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 03-23-2015, 02:55 AM #4
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

Depends on the application for the mirror in question. Bounce mirrors are far less critical than resonator mirrors, which require specific transmissivity and reflectance values.
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Old 03-24-2015, 05:40 AM #5
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

For most intents and purposes, as long as you have a front/first-surface mirror you should be good to go. Try to find ones made of aluminized glass though. You can find them on eBay or places like Surplus Shed.
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Old 03-24-2015, 08:00 AM #6
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

Cheap and/or free large first surface mirrors can be found in big screen TV's. I grabbed a few free from Craigslist pulled the mirrors bought a $7 glass cutting tool and now have around 30 small mirrors and several giants ones.......all free.
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Old 03-24-2015, 09:11 AM #7
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

Thanks guys.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ARG View Post
Regular mirrors will work, but they will not reflect as much light as mirrors designed for use with lasers.
How much though? Maybe its not much to bother. 0.5%?-2% loss, 2-5%? More?

And what are the mirrors designed for use with lasers? Are they only designed for use with lasers? (so I can't find them elsewhere). Is it maybe the same thing as "first surface mirrors" others mentioned?

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Originally Posted by Sigurthr View Post
Depends on the application for the mirror in question. Bounce mirrors are far less critical than resonator mirrors, which require specific transmissivity and reflectance values.
Never heard of these. I'll look them up.

I need to change the direction of a beam by 90 degrees. Maybe there are places which sell prisms for this task at a better cost?

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Old 03-24-2015, 09:41 AM #8
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

Surplus Shed sells mirrors for laser applications cheap
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Old 03-24-2015, 08:36 PM #9
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

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Originally Posted by iroquois View Post
How much though? Maybe its not much to bother. 0.5%?-2% loss, 2-5%? More?

And what are the mirrors designed for use with lasers? Are they only designed for use with lasers? (so I can't find them elsewhere). Is it maybe the same thing as "first surface mirrors" others mentioned?
It is a significant difference. It depends on the mirror, but in my experience it's around a 20-25% loss.

If your using a specific wavelength I recommend using dichroic mirrors, they reflect better than broadband mirrors.
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Old 03-24-2015, 09:24 PM #10
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ARG View Post
It is a significant difference. It depends on the mirror, but in my experience it's around a 20-25% loss.

If your using a specific wavelength I recommend using dichroic mirrors, they reflect better than broadband mirrors.
Thanks.

You recommend using dichroic mirrors over ordinary mirrors, or mirrors "specifically designed for lasers" which are meant to reflect every wavelength as well?

Also, are mirrors "specifically designed for lasers" "first surface mirrors", or is the former different from that as well and better?
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Old 03-25-2015, 04:24 AM #11
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

Dielectric mirrors will reflect light very well at their designed wavelength(s), on the order 99%. First surface mirrors will depend on the quality of the coating. You can get around 94-97% with a high-reflectivity coating.

Here's a good guide on how to rate mirror quality.

Rick Trent's ebay site has some decent mirrors for $5/each which isn't too bad.
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Old 03-25-2015, 10:30 AM #12
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

Hey, thanks a lot!
Did I read it right, the dielectric mirror he has works for all the visible (445, 520, 638) wavelengths? http://www.ebay.com/itm/18-Reflectiv...item3387baafee

How are these mirrors attached to the mirror holder? In my cheap chinese projector hot glue was used.

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Old 03-25-2015, 08:59 PM #13
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

Quote:
Originally Posted by iroquois View Post
Hey, thanks a lot!
Did I read it right, the dielectric mirror he has works for all the visible (445, 520, 638) wavelengths? 18 Reflective Film Mirror 445nm 532nm 635nm 650nm 98 for Knife Edging | eBay

How are these mirrors attached to the mirror holder? In my cheap chinese projector hot glue was used.
Depends on the mounts and mirrors - I've used square mirrors glued into place on the mount and round mirrors held into the mount with a set screw.
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Old 03-25-2015, 11:55 PM #14
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

Quote:
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Cheap and/or free large first surface mirrors can be found in big screen TV's. I grabbed a few free from Craigslist pulled the mirrors bought a $7 glass cutting tool and now have around 30 small mirrors and several giants ones.......all free.
Flat screen t.v.'s or projectors? Thanks
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Old 03-26-2015, 09:21 AM #15
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

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Originally Posted by iroquois View Post
Hey, thanks a lot!
Did I read it right, the dielectric mirror he has works for all the visible (445, 520, 638) wavelengths? 18 Reflective Film Mirror 445nm 532nm 635nm 650nm 98 for Knife Edging | eBay

How are these mirrors attached to the mirror holder? In my cheap chinese projector hot glue was used.
I do have some of those mirrors that he sent along with one of his kits, but I'm not really sure exactly what goes into their coatings and how effective they are over all those wavelengths. They are dielectric, as opposed to plain aluminization, but I'm not sure their exact quality.

As for mounting them, laboratory mirrors are often particular sizes (e.g. 1" discs) and they can be held in place with set screws in certain mounts. For regular mirrors though, you can just glue them to whatever mount you use (like this). You'll want them to be fixed in place so that they don't move or vibrate, and then use the mount hardware for precise positioning.
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Old 03-28-2015, 12:35 AM #16
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Default Re: mirros suitable for lasers?

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Originally Posted by starlight View Post
Cheap and/or free large first surface mirrors can be found in big screen TV's. I grabbed a few free from Craigslist pulled the mirrors bought a $7 glass cutting tool and now have around 30 small mirrors and several giants ones.......all free.
How can you tell a non-flat TV is projection based (has mirror) or just CRT? The screen has to be flat?

Last edited by iroquois; 03-28-2015 at 12:36 AM.
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