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Old 03-25-2008, 08:29 AM #1
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Default Effects over time?

So, I'm an electronics hobbyist, and recently my family had a DVD burner die on us. I had seen a couple youtube videos of what an extracted DVD laser + lens could do, and decided to go about making my own pointer. Unfortunately, I neglected to look up the safety information. :-[ I did know enough not to look into the beam though. Those 5mW lasers carry warnings, so I figured that once I got a lens, looking into the DVD's 200mW would be absolutely idiotic (seems to be the general consensus on the power rating of DVD diodes around the internet, correct me if I'm wrong).

So anyway, I extracted both the red DVD diode and the infrared CD diode. I killed the CD diode by hitting it with 9 volts (intentionally, invisible beams with the ability to blind me are not something I want around, or someone else to have the ability to have around in such a small package), but I tested the DVD diode. I don't have any sort of lens for it yet, so it never developed a "spot", and I haven't looked straight into it, but I did shine it at my desk (wood-grain matte finish) at close range for a bit and look at the red glow, which I'd say looked similar to a super-bright LED more than a laser.

Now that I've found these forums (and quite glad that I did), I see that these lasers can put out IR radiation too, which is worse than the red alone (please correct me if I'm wrong, I haven't read every post just yet, but most of the stickies). I'm currently not experiencing any vision problems, but my right eye is kind of tingling (for lack of a better word), and the pupil seems a bit larger than that of the left. Does anyone know if this is a sign of a major problem, or if its just me being hypersensitive now that I've read that I've broken a few major laser safety guidelines? I also noticed in one of the stickies that IR can cause blindness over time, so is it something like my eyes are fine now, but a while down the line, I'll start developing problems?

Any advice/corrections/criticisms are welcome, and I don't intend on using it again until I get proper glasses. I think I toasted the 200mW diode as well, because now it only emits a faint red light, so that was probably a good thing.


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Old 03-25-2008, 11:11 AM #2
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Default Re: Effects over time?

The first time i played with my laser, my eyes felt tired. Then i got use to it. I have never looked into my laser, but i did drop one of them and it did shine in my eye and now i got a little spot in my left eye.

Red lasers DO NOT put out ANY IR. They are purely RED lasers. Green will put out IR because its not actually a green laser, it is an IR laser with some pump diode which turns the beam green.

Can you see any artifacts in your eyes? If not then i don't think you have anything to worry about. The tingling is probably tiredness or just your eye not yet use to seeing an extreme bright shade of red.
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Old 03-25-2008, 02:15 PM #3
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Default Re: Effects over time?

Like Sarge said, red lasers are a single-diode system, so no IR is produced, unlike green lasers where a powerful IR laser shines its light on a crystal set which converts IR to visible light at 532nm. Most if not all crystals are not 100% efficient at converting this light to visible light, so you get some IR leakage. With red lasers, there is only a single red diode producing red light, so there's no need to worry about IR. As for long-term health effects, it just sounds like you're a little bit of a hypochondriac. It doesn't sound like anything, and I've burned my retinas with lasers before, so I wouldn't worry. If you're really worried, go see an optometrist and have them check it out.
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Old 03-25-2008, 04:14 PM #4
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Default Re: Effects over time?

Sounds good, thanks!
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Old 04-08-2008, 03:25 AM #5
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Default Re: Effects over time?

Donot worry too much, Have a check on your eye to get to be peaceful of your mind, and everything is clear. If you cannot leave a laser since, that's worth to be as a great experience 8-)

Take care !

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Old 04-08-2008, 02:44 PM #6
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Default Re: Effects over time?

now i dont see why you should get your eyes checked, its a waste of money, in the end your eyes are hurt or not, so just be careful from now on
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Old 04-09-2008, 04:41 AM #7
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Default Re: Effects over time?

Quote:
Originally Posted by natabata
now i dont see why you should get your eyes checked, its a waste of money, in the end your eyes are hurt or not, so just be careful from now on
Are you a doctor? *I doubt it. *Do you know anything about how the body heals? *Doesn't sound like it.

If you suspect you have injury to your eye from a laser, it's a good idea to at least have a visit with your optometrist and tell them that you are concerned about injury from a laser. *While they may not be able to fix a damaged retina, if there is a large amount of injury, they can refer you to an ophthalmologist or to a hospital (emergency) who may administer steroids to reduce inflammation and prevent further damage. *They may also have treatments to fascilitate healing or prevent infection, if necessary.

Don't go around advising someone against any medical treatment unless you know what the hell you're talking about!
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Old 04-09-2008, 12:26 PM #8
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Default Re: Effects over time?

Agreed. Damage done does not mean it won't heal.
So frankly STFU when it's other people's health and wellbeing on the line.
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Old 04-09-2008, 12:30 PM #9
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Default Re: Effects over time?

scarey topic eye safety is # 1 priority in my book man i wish i could read what i just typed lol
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