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thefiredlaser

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Hey,

Got the great tip from Immo1282 to post an introduction of myself, posted in the help section of the forum first. Excuse my manners, I was raised by wolves and baboons and they´re not much for maners. Jokes aside, I´m a 27 year old guy with roots in South America that was born and raised in the Nordics in Europe. I´ve been stuck to eletrical things since I was a kid, mostly computers though building automation solutions and scalable solutions. Dropped out of high school when I was 15 to start working 1st line Support and 12 years later I´m working as an architect on a daily basis. On my spare time I love building things, programming, photgraphy, diving, motorcycles and cars.

Sometimes I get ideas that I can't get out of my head and lasers are now one of them, I belive that they can play a crucial role in minimizing loss of energy to heat things. So my plan is to order home everything needed and start building prototypes, I´m a complete novice when it comes to building lasers so I hope some of you will be willing to contribute with your expertice to a rookie ;) And not to worry I promise I´ll use caution with the lasers, use protective gear and minimize reflective areas and properly ground everything. Please check out my post in the Help section if you´d like and chime in with your thoughts and ideas.

Hope I´ll get to know all of you over time!

Over n' out,
Firedlaser
 
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RedCowboy

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Welcome thefiredlaser

How would a laser be more efficient at say.....heating room air than a nickel chromium wire heater ?

In both cases waste heat is the goal, resistance wire making heat is what we want to do so what's the by product? light ?

I think the nickel chromium wire heater would be much more cost effective as well as faster which are likely the biggest considerations, but looking simply at efficiency how would a laser be more efficient at increasing the temperature of the air in a room than a nickel chromium wire heater and what would be the differences ?
 

Immo1282

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Yeah, RedCowboy's point is excellent - Lasers produce a significant amount of waste heat at the diode, for powerful diodes capable of heating and burning materials, much heatsinking is needed to allow them to run continuously.
 

thefiredlaser

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Thanks for the warm welcome @BowtieGuy @Hap @RedCowboy @PhaserBoy @paul1598419 @Immo1282 :) Feeling like home already!

@RedCowboy quick reply to your point, I´m assuming that with a laser you can in a confined space more rapidly heat a single point thus produce more "fumes" in a less amount of time? If you compare to a coil the amount of power to heat to the same temperature in a confined space will be more right and quite more time consuming than with a laser? Plus if you use the heatsink as a part of the heating in the confined space, then it wouldnt be a waste of energy? (this is completly dependant on usage) Please correct me if I´m wrong in any of my theories, I´m always open to learn !

@paul1598419 Nope never been a member before, think that this is my third post on here :)
 
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Immo1282

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I´m assuming that with a laser you can in a confined space more rapidly heat a single point
By this if you mean a tiny single point on a surface, then yes, a Laser will be pretty optimal for this job. Traditional resistance heating elements are still going to be more efficient at heating a small volume of a material.

By "fumes" - what are you heating up? You'll get a decent coil of smoke from burning most materials with a well-focused beam.

Laser Diodes from what I've seen are typically on the order of around 50% efficient - so they will emit approximately half of their input power as optical power output - but there will be additional optical losses in the lenses to collimate/focus, and even the best switch mode drivers will only be 80-90% efficient. Your proposed linear driver from your other thread is going to waste a significant amount of power also.
 

thefiredlaser

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By this if you mean a tiny single point on a surface, then yes, a Laser will be pretty optimal for this job. Traditional resistance heating elements are still going to be more efficient at heating a small volume of a material.

By "fumes" - what are you heating up? You'll get a decent coil of smoke from burning most materials with a well-focused beam.

Laser Diodes from what I've seen are typically on the order of around 50% efficient - so they will emit approximately half of their input power as optical power output - but there will be additional optical losses in the lenses to collimate/focus, and even the best switch mode drivers will only be 80-90% efficient. Your proposed linear driver from your other thread is going to waste a significant amount of power also.
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Okay lets skip the mystery since it isnt helping at all. I´d like to heat up dry herbs and concentrates :geek: I´m having a hard time beliving that a traditional resitance heating will be more efficient if you design the laser encapsulation to be optimal for the usage or am I still off?

Okay, how would you go about designing the driver to be able to deliver 80-90% efficency?
 

Immo1282

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Okay, how would you go about designing the driver to be able to deliver 80-90% efficency?
This one's easy - you use a switching (buck, boost, Buck/Boost or SEPIC) converter to take power from a DC power supply or battery and provide the regulated current needed by the Laser Diode. Linear Drivers are great (they're simple to understand and design) but they do waste a lot of power even if the voltage difference between input and output is minimised.

Personally I think you're over-engineering a solution to your problem - but it's entirely possible that lasers are the right thing. Resistance heating can be really efficient if you need to heat a large volume quickly, but for something that's not good to come in contact with the hot wire then yeah, I can understand why you might want to avoid that...

The heat you need is nowhere near beyond what one diode can put out. I can burn cardboard from across a room in 4-5 seconds, or pretty much instantaneously if it's focused close up. You'll get better results if the material you're burning is dark coloured as it will absorb more energy.

I'm going to approach the problem from an engineering perspective and ignore the outcome cause you seem like a friendly enough person - but I can see why you were hesitant to reveal it :)
 
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thefiredlaser

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This one's easy - you use a switching (buck, boost, Buck/Boost or SEPIC) converter to take power from a DC power supply or battery and provide the regulated current needed by the Laser Diode. Linear Drivers are great (they're simple to understand and design) but they do waste a lot of power even if the voltage difference between input and output is minimised.

Personally I think you're over-engineering a solution to your problem - but it's entirely possible that lasers are the right thing. Resistance heating can be really efficient if you need to heat a large volume quickly, but for something that's not good to come in contact with the hot wire then yeah, I can understand why you might want to avoid that...

The heat you need is nowhere near beyond what one diode can put out. I can burn cardboard from across a room in 4-5 seconds, or pretty much instantaneously if it's focused close up. You'll get better results if the material you're burning is dark coloured as it will absorb more energy.

I'm going to approach the problem from an engineering perspective and ignore the outcome cause you seem like a friendly enough person - but I can see why you were hesitant to reveal it :)
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Alrighty then, thank for that @Immo1282 will read up on buck, boost, buck/boost and SEPIC to see what it entails. Never even heard those until I got onto the forum. Just proves how little one actually knows haha. Might you have some good quality tips on where to read up on these or maybe a good book?

You could be right, I tend to over think things but it has resulted in some pretty cool products and some that were horrible haha. My intention is to avoid the bi-taste that's produced when one gets into traditional convection heating. Cleaner and better in my opinon. The materials that are used today are not good to heat up consequently and inhale on a weekly or daily basis depending on your preference.

Alright, in that case I´ll build the first prototype with a single laser and try :)

Thanks for looking past the outcome, people tend to have quite strong opinions on the subject. Although I see usage in other consumer tech aswell with the same laser heating tech!
 

Immo1282

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Thanks for looking past the outcome, people tend to have quite strong opinions on the subject. Although I see usage in other consumer tech aswell with the same laser heating tech!
Most of the strong opinions you get are from a covering our backs perspective - but public and legal opinions are changing so that's becoming less relevant. Trust me when i say that I don't approve of drug use in the slightest - but I can draw the line at technical help provided you don't hurt yourself :)
 

PhaserBoy

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I wouldnt fire up a laser at a glass object, at least without the proper laser eye protection, you wouldnt want your eyes getting to red from "laser burn" and the glasses would prevent that :cool: Blessings with your medicine project.
 




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