How to Select Diode Lasers             Image credit: Digi-Key | Thorlabs | Newark/element14   Diode lasers (or laser diodes) are semiconductor lasers which use electrical power as an energy source and doped p-n junctions as a gain medium.   Diode Laser Fundamentals   Operation As discussed in the Lasers Selection Guide, all lasers consist of three components: an energy source (or pump), a gain medium, and an...
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Q & A on Diode Lasers

We asked our users for their input on Diode Lasers. Here are the results of 81 users familiar with Diode Lasers.

Who Took Our Poll? | Design Trends | Applications and Use | Features | Buying Advice |

Who Took Our Poll?Top

Design TrendsTop

Q:
What new technologies are influencing diode laser design?
10 answers
Answers:
Surgical applications are broadening out, Cosmetic applications are expanding Delivery systems, surgical navigation devices, ablation devices
~Jerry C, General Management, Framingham, MA
Improvements in material science and innovations in semiconductor technologies.
~Ertan Halac, Engineer, Ankara, Turkey
Other evolving laser technology such as pieco and femto laser
~Sim s See yoke, Marketing/Sales, Singapore, Singapore
The new material of ZnO to form UV laser
~Rami E, Engineer, Six october, Egypt
High speed tuning by Bragg laser..
~Nivesh B, Student, Patiala, India
Compactness and energy
~Engineering, Design, S Petersburg, Russia
Gallium nitride (GaN)
~Victor A, Engineer, Bs. as., Argentina
Source dimmer output.
~Luis Caraschi, Engineer, São Carlos, Brasil
Infrared led modules
~Viresh A, Engineer, Surat, India
Nano Tube
~Alan L, Technical Support, Federal Way, WA

Q:
From your perspective, which companies are creating the most innovative diode lasers?
8 answers
Answers:
Unknown, some companies make diode lasers but it's not their specialty. Not many Diode companies understand the medical/surgical marketplace.
~Jerry C, General Management, Framingham, MA
None help with application of their products.
~Alan L, Technical Support, Federal Way, WA
Coherent Inc. Axel Electron Co.ltd.
~Ertan Halac, Engineer, Ankara, Turkey
Epilog, Tamex, ILT, among others
~Victor A, Engineer, Bs. as., Argentina
Ondax, Eagleyard Photonics
~Research & Development, Moscow, Russia
Northrop Gruhman
~Viresh A, Engineer, Surat, India
Coherent
~Rami E, Engineer, Six october, Egypt
Coherent
~Luis Caraschi, Engineer, São Carlos, Brasil

Applications and UseTop

Q:
What are some of the applications you have used diode lasers for?
26 answers
Answers:
Pilot light in medical equipment Laser pointer applications Macular treatment in ophthalmology Positioning aid in medical instruments/devices Aiming device for aligning Epilation Coagulation of tissues
~Ertan Halac, Engineer, Ankara, Turkey
Measuring optical transmission of different materials Shooting holography Self-defense Party Play with my dogs
~Research & Development, Brooklyn, NY
To burn wood, to burn circuit boards, and if I had one with more power I would be doing other things with it.
~Research & Development, Tehachapi, CA
-Laser radar (undergraduate project) -Photoluminescence from Quantum Dot samples (thesis project)
~Rami E, Engineer, Six october, Egypt
Wanting to install in a Offset Press to cut the sheet in half on it's way to the delivery stack.
~Alan L, Technical Support, Federal Way, WA
As short impulse light source for test semiconductor photodetectors. Elipsometry. Profilometer.
~Engineering, Design, Novosibirsk, Russian Federation
For fun, for making laser show, in housework when you need to make straight or cross line.
~Ivan M, Engineer, Klin, Russia
Medical general Surgery / Aesthetical Medicine Laser Systems
~Engineering, Design, Caesarea, Israel
Fluorescence spectroscopy, other spectroscopic applications
~Research & Development, Moscow, Russia
Replacement of lamp pump and yag system with diodes
~Viresh A, Engineer, Surat, India
Laser Particle Counter , positioning system
~Engineering, Design, Bangkok, Thailand
In optical Networks. In data communication
~Nivesh B, Student, Patiala, India
Schlieren imaging of ultrasonic phenomena
~Research & Development, Pretoria, South Africa
For our research purpose and lab purpose
~Engineering, Faculty/Staff/Student, Chennai, India
Atomic and molecular physics research.
~Research & Development, Cambridge, MA
Development of measurement techniques
~Engineering, Design, S Petersburg, Russia
Physical therapy, alignment
~Oscar Z, Design Engineer, Montevideo, Uruguay, South America
Surgical applications, MANY
~Jerry C, General Management, Framingham, MA
Plastics welding
~Sim s See yoke, Marketing/Sales, Singapore, Singapore
Burning metal
~Victor A, Engineer, Bs. as., Argentina
CAR lighting
~Engineering, Design, Novy Jicin, Czech Republic
interference
~Research & Development, Sofia, Bulgaria
Measurements
~Research & Development, Dashi township, Taiwan
DVD Player
~Engineering, Design, Ansan, Korea (South)
Engraving
~Tamasi Ianos, Manufacturer, Cugir, Romania
Medical
~Luis Caraschi, Engineer, São Carlos, Brasil

Q:
Please share with us any “non-standard” applications that diode lasers have been used for.
7 answers
Answers:
Cancer therapy, New forms of ablation therapy and/or procedures, Application specific lasers.
~Jerry C, General Management, Framingham, MA
Laser pointers for entertainment and key chain applications.
~Ertan Halac, Engineer, Ankara, Turkey
Cutting paper in the delivery system of an offset press.
~Alan L, Technical Support, Federal Way, WA
I heard that they could make a cell follow a laser spot.
~Rami E, Engineer, Six october, Egypt
Diamond cutting
~Viresh A, Engineer, Surat, India
To mark bad cars
~Victor A, Engineer, Bs. as., Argentina
Heating
~Luis Caraschi, Engineer, São Carlos, Brasil

Q:
Do you know of any disastrous mistakes that occurred due to the incorrect usage of diode lasers?
6 answers
Answers:
Production staff seem to want to play with the laser as they install. Beware of those type of incidents. Injury is sure to follow.
~Alan L, Technical Support, Federal Way, WA
They are out there, usual laser problems that should not happen with good educational support. and smart laser companies.
~Jerry C, General Management, Framingham, MA
I know a professor who lost his eye sight because he looked directly into an invisible laser.
~Rami E, Engineer, Six october, Egypt
Yes, usually it is injuring of eyes.
~Ivan M, Engineer, Klin, Russia
Incorrect flow rate mostly, I noticed.
~Viresh A, Engineer, Surat, India
Avoid touching.
~Sim s See yoke, Marketing/Sales, Singapore, Singapore

FeaturesTop

Q:
What would your design or feature "wish list" be for this product?
10 answers
Answers:
I wish it would be: small focus area, long operating life, adjustable intensity, broad range of operating voltage, wide range of operating current, multiple color diode lasers, higher wavelength extending far IR.
~Ertan Halac, Engineer, Ankara, Turkey
Small, high powered, CW and pulsed capabilities, light weight, flexible. Focus on the delivery system as well. Much better educational support. If you can improve this area, sales will jump significantly.
~Jerry C, General Management, Framingham, MA
To have a high power semiconductor UV laser (the bulky HeCd are not that practical because of the space they take).
~Rami E, Engineer, Six october, Egypt
1st of all should be compatible with all optical cable, 2nd very high speed tuning, wider range than L band.
~Nivesh B, Student, Patiala, India
20 watt temp mode power q-switched at 10khz guaranteed for at least 15000 hours
~Viresh A, Engineer, Surat, India
Easier access to helpful product application specialist.
~Alan L, Technical Support, Federal Way, WA
Stable and powerful single longitudinal mode operation
~Research & Development, Moscow, Russia
Driver for diode laser
~Luis Caraschi, Engineer, São Carlos, Brasil
Cutting metal
~Victor A, Engineer, Bs. as., Argentina
Smaller size
~Sim s See yoke, Marketing/Sales, Singapore, Singapore

Buying AdviceTop

Q:
Do you have any advice for people relative to buying or using diode lasers?
8 answers
Answers:
Read a lot about the different specs so you don't end up with the wrong LD. Know about the precautions so you don't burn it.
~Rami E, Engineer, Six october, Egypt
Look at the diode before buying a laser and see if your application can be done by a diode. Then buy the diode.
~Jerry C, General Management, Framingham, MA
Have a good inside connection to make sure your project is not stopped due to lack of industry support.
~Alan L, Technical Support, Federal Way, WA
No one is still capable of providing a diode laser which can economically replace against lamp pump!
~Viresh A, Engineer, Surat, India
The current driver diode laser < max current diode laser.
~Luis Caraschi, Engineer, São Carlos, Brasil
Don't buy China lasers :) Only from USA companies.
~Ivan M, Engineer, Klin, Russia
It depend on application to application.
~Nivesh B, Student, Patiala, India
Osram, old times RCA SG2007, etc.
~Oscar Z, Design Engineer, Montevideo, Uruguay, South America

Q:
Is there any advice you want to share with users to help them avoid common errors in selection or usage of diode lasers?
6 answers
Answers:
Buy the laser of power no higher than you really need, because it's very dangerous to operate with powerful lasers. Be careful!
~Ivan M, Engineer, Klin, Russia
Work with laser smart companies and laser smart sales people that can discuss multiple types of laser products.
~Jerry C, General Management, Framingham, MA
Don't have much more field diameter than mentioned, must work in wavelength band specified.
~Nivesh B, Student, Patiala, India
Economically, to replace lamp heads with diode heads is still an illusion!
~Viresh A, Engineer, Surat, India
Europe seems to be hungrier to support its product.
~Alan L, Technical Support, Federal Way, WA
Read a lot... and don't take chances.
~Rami E, Engineer, Six october, Egypt


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