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Old 07-31-2016, 07:25 AM #1
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Default Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

I'm finding it difficult to find cheap ebay AR coated lenses of the correct focal length for use with beam expansion. What is the effect of using a PCX lens 50% too small for the beam diameter at its focal length? Just a waste of power otherwise ok? What about if the lens is 50% too large for the beam diameter? Any plusses for having the lens twice as large as it needs to be? I did notice astigmatism wings from a NUBM44 laser diode were eliminated when using a lens twice as large as the beam diameter, is this a commonly known spherical PCX lens property with the newer high power multimode laser diodes? Any other plusses for using PCX lenses which are have diameters which are twice as large or more than they need to be for the beam diameter?


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Last edited by Alaskan; 07-31-2016 at 12:10 PM. Reason: Greatly simplified the question
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Old 07-31-2016, 07:59 AM #2
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

Sawnu's 3X expander works well, I use them with a G2/G7/3element lens.
I set the primary G2/G7/3ele to about 12-17 feet and the expander will focus to a clean bar at any distance, the further the larger of course but it's a clean focus.

The expander has a lens at the input and another at the exit so it is possible to calculate lens curvature to work with our MM diodes after the primary lens in a wide range of adjustment, I don't know the formula or even how to figure for the formula, but I see it can be done.

With a NUBM44 and a 3 element focused to 15 feet, then attach the 3X expander and it can zoom to set paper on fire 20 feet across the yard or set wood on fire just right in front of me and all in between, the math on the 3X lenses works.

If I use a 44 diode and a Sanwu G2 zeroed at 15 feet and the 6X cyl pair zeroed at 15 feet then the 3X I can zoom to burn cardboard at 75 feet and likely further, or burn wood 5 feet to 20 feet away, but in my backyard I only have 75 feet to work with.

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Old 07-31-2016, 08:24 AM #3
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

Thanks, I'm interested in that BE, I wrote Podo and asked him the input and output aperture, he said it is actually a 3.3 beam expansion.
Quote:
Podo:

Input lens: 7.2mm

Output lens: 24mm

Which mean the BE has ~3.3 magnification ratio actually.
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"I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness..." - Max Planck. "Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real" - Neils Bohr. "What we call physical things and events do not exist independently of subjective experience..." - Deepak Chopra.

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Last edited by Alaskan; 07-31-2016 at 10:54 AM. Reason: As always, I think of more to add later
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Old 07-31-2016, 08:42 AM #4
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

I've got to admit Alaskan, I would think with a title directed to the "optics savvy" that the thread would be by a newer member. I'd think of you as pretty optics savvy already Otherwise great to see the info from this thread, pretty helpful stuff.
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Old 07-31-2016, 08:45 AM #5
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

I am learning lenses as I go.

The 3X from Sawnu proves it can be done.

When you order the expander get some adaptors, they are metal.

I drill out the hole in the adaptor a little wider but not enough to get into the threads, then screw my G2 or 3 ele into the adaptor tight.
Once I set my G2 or 3ele focus to about 15 feet I push the module into the heat sink and tighten the heat sink set screw, this holds the G2/3ele zero, then just screw on the expander.

It's so very worth it and you will see the lenses work well, so it can be done.

The laser in the pic with the spacers are to hold my zero distance setting of my 3 element, I could not slide my module back because I used mounting heat past that is rock solid.

This is just an easy fun way to do it, but what is really cool is how well the 3X lenses work over a wide range, so a bigger 7X or 15X could be built.



--------edit--------
Yes it is actually 3.3X and you are right about the smaller emitters being the one factor that's hard to get around, I'm just doing what I can on a budget and learning a bit as I go, I would love to truly understand lenses and be able to design expanders with a center relay lens so beam width and focal point could be adjusted.
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Old 07-31-2016, 09:26 AM #6
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

I am getting more understanding of optics, but not enough yet for these kinds of things. There are a few members here who really know this subject well, but they don't come back to the forum as regularly as I do

RCB, if I read you correctly, you found a way to stiffen up the coupling of Podo's BE so it doesn't wobble as much, that is something we need, it is the only weak part of the design I can see from the reports. Is his BE AR coated?
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Sincerely investigate any of these three short quotes as new concepts and you've taken your first step into a larger world:

"I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness..." - Max Planck. "Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real" - Neils Bohr. "What we call physical things and events do not exist independently of subjective experience..." - Deepak Chopra.

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Old 07-31-2016, 09:58 AM #7
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

Yes the 3X is AR coated for VIS, it's not a heavy coating but if you tip it you can see the coating, so far they have been super tough expanders that make a real difference in the burning fun of the horribly divergent 44 diode. They work for red and green diodes as well.
I just ordered some more yesterday I like them so much, remember to get the adaptors, without the acrylic lens they are inexpensive and surprisingly ridged, just be sure to snug them down tight.



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Old 07-31-2016, 10:04 AM #8
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

I'm not tracking, without the acrylic lens? You can order the body of the BE alone with no lens? I didn't know the lens was plastic.
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Sincerely investigate any of these three short quotes as new concepts and you've taken your first step into a larger world:

"I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness..." - Max Planck. "Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real" - Neils Bohr. "What we call physical things and events do not exist independently of subjective experience..." - Deepak Chopra.

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Old 07-31-2016, 10:11 AM #9
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

No the 3X lenses are GLASS, the adaptor comes with an acrylic lens screwed in that's useless for high power diodes, tell him you want just the adaptor and that makes them inexpensive.
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Old 07-31-2016, 10:56 AM #10
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

Oh, it comes with a cheap plastic lens to screw into your Axiz module, now I understand, thanks. Yea, I'd throw those out, what is the price without the cheap threaded 6mm lens?
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"I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness..." - Max Planck. "Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real" - Neils Bohr. "What we call physical things and events do not exist independently of subjective experience..." - Deepak Chopra.

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Old 07-31-2016, 11:27 AM #11
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

I just bought 2 more 3X expanders for 55.00 each plus 26.00 for speedy post shipping and the adaptors are just a few bucks, they are metal.\, tell Sanwu that you don't need the acrylic lens in the adaptor.
I set my G2/3 ele at 15 feet then back off a half turn and push the module with lens and adaptor into the heat sink so the adaptor sits against the heat sink, then tighten my set screw and run the adaptor back down that 1/2 turn and it will be nice and snug against your heat sink and zeroed at 15 feet, then screw the 3x in tight and its solid.
I find that a 15 foot zero is a good median point and the expander can make up for a lot, you can tweak it but 15 feet works well, if you are indoors you could go 10 or 12 feet but it's not a big deal, the 3X has a lot of range.
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Old 07-31-2016, 12:40 PM #12
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

I could use a 3.3 beam expander on my single mode pointers which have a small emitter making the beam expansion improve their already low divergence even more, but I'm too greedy, for any other laser diode any less than 10X isn't enough to satisfy my desire for extra low divergence! For the NUBM44, perhaps 3.3X brings the divergence down enough to be acceptable for most individuals, but for a pointer using that diode to have close to normal divergence I'd hope to see no more than 1.5 mRad, is 3.3 expansion enough to produce 1.5 mRad divergence with the NUBM44?

The divergence is low enough on a 7475 1W 520nm laser diode, an M140 or M462 to be plenty of expansion at 3X to tame those multimode diodes, but for the 450nm 7 watt beast, I'd want more expansion. The only problem is most 10X beam expanders you can find don't have a large enough input aperture/lens to use with the NUBM44, as you found with the Jetlaser BE, although you found a work around for the problem
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Old 08-04-2016, 02:02 PM #13
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

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Originally Posted by Alaskan View Post
I'm finding it difficult to find cheap ebay AR coated lenses of the correct focal length for use with beam expansion. What is the effect of using a PCX lens 50% too small for the beam diameter at its focal length? Just a waste of power otherwise ok? What about if the lens is 50% too large for the beam diameter? Any plusses for having the lens twice as large as it needs to be? I did notice astigmatism wings from a NUBM44 laser diode were eliminated when using a lens twice as large as the beam diameter, is this a commonly known spherical PCX lens property with the newer high power multimode laser diodes? Any other plusses for using PCX lenses which are have diameters which are twice as large or more than they need to be for the beam diameter?
I learned something new.

You'll truncate the sides of the beam depending on how small the diameter is.

They're might be other pluses. If you find any please pass them on.

When retail expanders are constructed there's a warning of a sort emphasizing at the input, a maximum beam diameter. That means obviously that you'll want a lens with a diameter large enough to accommodate the input beam. It also means the output lens needs to be larger in diameter.

Something to try. One can collimate a laser beam with just one positive lens off a bare diode ( no optics in place). Just place the lens at a distance from the diode about equal to it's focal length.

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Old 08-04-2016, 05:41 PM #14
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

[qute]hYou'll truncate the sides of the beam depending on how small the diameter is.[/quote]

Steve, I'm not tracking, are you recommending a lens smaller than the beam diameter to cut off the wings? What I did was use a PCX lens twice the diameter of the uncollimated NUBM44 output beam and had no wings at all. i.e. a 2 inch lens with a focal length long enough to produce a 1 inch spot on it from the diode.
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Old 08-04-2016, 06:33 PM #15
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

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Originally Posted by Alaskan View Post
[qute]hYou'll truncate the sides of the beam depending on how small the diameter is.
Steve, I'm not tracking, are you recommending a lens smaller than the beam diameter to cut off the wings? What I did was use a PCX lens twice the diameter of the uncollimated NUBM44 output beam and had no wings at all. i.e. a 2 inch lens with a focal length long enough to produce a 1 inch spot on it from the diode.[/QUOTE]

Read carefully what is written, it's clear. But no, just the opposite.

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Old 08-05-2016, 03:51 AM #16
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Default Re: Question for the optics savvy in regard to beam expansion to reduce divergence.

OK, I wouldn't do that to get rid of the wings, my NUBM44 works great by having a lens twice the diameter of the beam; look Ma, no wings!

You are right to respond with remark about the trunking or cut-off of the beam using a lens too small, I forgot I had also mentioned that in my first post because my main interest is in whether there is a draw-back from having the lens too large. But regarding lenses smaller than the beam size, even if the beam is cut off, doesn't the output maintain the same divergence after collimation, if the input beam is far wider than the lens? I mean the same divergence it would have had if the lens were large enough to pass the whole beam through?
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To shorten my signature I have moved most of my laser related web links to this forum page, the second post in that thread shows most of my builds... Alaskan's Laser Links: http://laserpointerforums.com/f44/al...ml#post1449395


Sincerely investigate any of these three short quotes as new concepts and you've taken your first step into a larger world:

"I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness..." - Max Planck. "Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real" - Neils Bohr. "What we call physical things and events do not exist independently of subjective experience..." - Deepak Chopra.

Each of these three rabbit holes go deep, ending up in the same place.

Useless troll fighting.

Last edited by Alaskan; 08-05-2016 at 05:14 AM.
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