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Old 09-05-2013, 12:41 AM #1
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Default Connecting laser to DC adaptor

Recently I built an art project which I call a "Laser Frame," to hang on my wall. See the attached images. Inside the frame is a green laser pointer, which I bought at Radio Shack:

Green Laser Pointer : Laser Pointers | RadioShack.com

The laser is battery-powered, but I'd like to use it with a DC adaptor and have it running continuously, 24/7. Normally it uses two AAA batteries, so I tried connecting it to a 3V DC adaptor. With the adaptor, it works, but it seems to automatically shut itself off after a while. Is this because it's overheating? If so, should I use a heat sink with it? Should I use a lower voltage?
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Connecting laser to DC adaptor-laser-frame-709x600.jpg   Connecting laser to DC adaptor-imag0011-800x600.jpg  


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Old 09-05-2013, 12:57 AM #2
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Default Re: Connecting laser to DC adaptor

pointers are usually designed for intermittent duty. I suggest you look at lab style lasers with built in fans and heatsinks for continuous operation.
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Old 09-07-2013, 01:12 AM #3
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Default Re: Connecting laser to DC adaptor

Give us the ratings of the DC adapter you used. Also measure the open-circuit voltage output.
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Old 09-15-2013, 08:30 AM #4
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Default Re: Connecting laser to DC adaptor

djQUAN: That's a good thought, but aren't lab-style lasers always large? A larger laser wouldn't fit into the frame as is; it would require lots of modifications to the project.

Cyparagon: The ratings of the adapter are 3 volts, 700 mA. I measured the open-circuit voltage output, with a multimeter, and I got 2.998 volts.
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Old 09-15-2013, 01:35 PM #5
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Default Re: Connecting laser to DC adaptor

Yes, but that's the tradeoff for something that can dissipate the heat so that it can run continuously. You could stick/thermal epoxy a small heatsink to the side of the RS pointer and add a small fan to increase the duy cycle a bit. Not sure though how much it will help.
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Old 09-18-2013, 04:11 AM #6
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Default Re: Connecting laser to DC adaptor

Sounds like instability in the MCA area. A 5mW pointer will not give off enough heat to damage things. Some greens just run better at 20C, and no hotter. I would recommend trying a different green.
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