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Pulsed YAG laser from Heuursciences

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A while back I saw a post by Chris (Heuursciences) offering custom built YAG and CO2 lasers for sale. Having always wanted a pulsed laser, I took him up on his offer. It took a little while to get the laser after I sent payment, maybe a couple of weeks, because he had trouble getting some of the parts delivered.

But the laser arrived last Tuesday, and unfortunately that evening we had terrible storms here and I was without power for over 24 hours.....it really stinks when you just get a new laser (well, there is the option of battery power, but I was in the dark and needed my batteries for flashlights!) and you can't use it! :mad:

Anyway, my power was restored and I was able to fire up the laser and make a video, which really doesn't do it justice, as I'll explain.

When I opened the box I was expecting a plain, boring metal case of sorts, but I found this funky little blue box that Chris had built the laser into:





The laser came with a wall adapter, a box with a plug if I want to adapt it to run on batteries, some extra lens covers in case anything happens to the one on the laser, an instruction sheet and a pair of YAG glasses (originally not included but he added them because it took so long for me to get the laser) .



On the outside of the case there are all the typical warning labels (I also added a customized one of my own), a power light, a light on top indicating the laser is ready to fire, and the fire button. The laser also has a key and a switch inside to disable the high voltage. Kinda funny this laser would be perfectly legal in Australia (that is if some dummy in customs didn't think it was a bomb and try to blow it up)!





On to performance: The laser is rated at 3J per milllisecond - says on the instruction paper "3J at 1mS ~3.KW" Not sure what is meant by the "3.KW" - can't imagine he meant "kilowatt"......
So I used a piece of black foam core for the target, and fired the laser after it had charged for about half a minute. There was this loud "pop" and a flash of flame came off the foam core. I examined where the beam had hit, and being that the beam is unfocused, there was a circular area a couple mm wide where the material had been ablated away.
I wanted to see what it would do when focused, so I got a regular glass lens and set that a couple inches from the output window, at a slight angle, so any reflections wouldn't come back and damage the window. I let it charge for at least a minute and then fired it again, this time with a louder pop, and a big flash of flame, and this time it drilled a hole in the foam core (didn't go all the way thru, though).

Here's the vid (the YAG is in the first few seconds, hitting the foam core and popping a balloon. It was hard to film as the flash is so fast, and it's hard to see even slowed way down. A high-speed film or video camera would be great to film a laser like this, but all I have is a regular camcorder. I also used the nightshot feature, to see if it would show up better, but not really.):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=URUzWrQ8Iww

All in all a cool little laser - I love the loud pop and flash of flame, even if I can't adequately film it! I'm going to have to try it out on other things and see what it does. Quite a different breed if you're used to burning/melting stuff with a CW laser.....
 

Petrovski

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Weird looking laser. It has "DIY" written all over it, literally speaking. But it sounds like fun to actually charge your laser and discharge all its power in one blast. :)

Oh and your YAG is indeed 3kW if it outputs 3 J/mS. 1W=1J/s. 3/0.001=3000.
 

jamilm9

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I don't know much about other lasers.How much did it cost and what waveleaght is it.
 

diachi

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Is the wavelength not 1064nm ??

Try light a match, cause thats a pretty sweet laser .

Good choice of song, erruption by van halen ;D

Diachi
 
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Diachi said:
Is the wavelength not 1064nm ??

Try light a match, cause thats a pretty sweet laser .

Good choice of song, erruption by van halen ;D

Diachi
Actually I did try to light a black-tipped match, and all it did (unfocused beam) was to ablate away some of the surface! I'll have to see what it does when focused. I paid about $350 incl. shipping.
 

diachi

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Schrecken_Licht said:
[quote author=Diachi link=1213416274/0#4 date=1213458726]Is the wavelength not 1064nm ??

Try light a match, cause thats a pretty sweet laser .

Good choice of song, erruption by van halen  ;D

Diachi
Actually I did try to light a black-tipped match, and all it did (unfocused beam) was to ablate away some of the surface!  I'll have to see what it does when focused.  I paid about $350 incl. shipping.
[/quote]

Thats not bad, looks like a lot of fun :)

Diachi
 

Hemlock_Mike

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Be careful -- I think that that's an SSY-1 NdYag module. Be very careful with your eyes. I got a bare module from Chris over a year ago and that laser chipped glass lenses on both sides. That isn't a toy.

Mike
 
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It IS a SSY 1 module inside with the associated HV power supplier. If you want to remove the writing just use a cloth wet with denatured alcohol. I was rushed and couldn't print proper labels for it.
 

Benm

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That thing looks like something from a mad scientists' basement, and i guess it actually is ;)

As for the power rating: 3J/mS is 3kW indeed, peak intensity. To figure out its average power you need to know the pulse rate and pulse duration.
 
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Actually I DID get it to light a match tonight! I used a lens (thankfully the lens is holding up - no cracks so far!) and got the match head in the focal point and fired. That match lit faster than one in the unfocused beam of my 350mw greenie!

I like the "mad scientist - jury-rigged" look of the laser. Makes it unique + you have this dangerous and destructive thing lurking in an unassuming, harmless-looking little box! ;D
 

Switch

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Nice laser.And so compact.I assume you calculate pulse width using the discharge rate of that massive cap, but how to you calculate energy? :-/
How are the beam specs?
 
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Switch said:
Nice laser.And so compact.I assume you calculate pulse width using the discharge rate of that massive cap, but how to you calculate energy? :-/
How are the beam specs?

I'm a bad one to ask about calculating anything - math isn't my strong suit.

From about 3 feet away the ablated spot (unfocused raw beam) is about 5mm wide. The energy seems to dissipate too much any further than that and doesn't leave a mark on black foam board so I can't get a measurement further away. But even though it didn't leave a mark it still made a pop - might be ionizing the air or something.
 

iewed

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After (Or if) you focus it, could you put some match lighting videos at close and long range up? I think it would be interesting to see what this laser can do, plus you could make all those other kids with DX 200's bragging about their lasers "green with envy" (Sorry, I had too).
 

Murudai

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It's only a brief pulse though.

Question. How long would you need to run a 200mW laser until you generate the same amount of energy as one pulse of that pulse laser?
 

Benm

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Thats impossible to tell without knowing the pulse width and repetition rate. The later you can probably figure out easily by counting the pops. Lets assume it has a 100 uS pulse width and 1 Hz firing rate - at 3 kW peak power, that'd result in 300 mW average output.

But even though it didn't leave a mark it still made a pop - might be ionizing the air or something.
The pop is likely to be just air expanding from rapidly heating the target.

Ionizing air is another thing, if you actually produce dielectrical breakdown you get a spark effect in mid air. I'm not sure if this laser is capable of producing that, but it might be doable width good optics - give it a try :)
 




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