MKS Instruments, Inc. (NASDAQ: MKSI), a global provider of technologies that enable advanced processes and improve productivity, has announced at Photonics West that Ophir® BeamWatch®, the first non-contact beam monitoring system for very high power lasers, is ISO 11146 compliant.
BeamWatch provides real-time beam measurements of lasers that are typically too powerful for direct readings. It measures the Rayleigh scatter of a substantial length of the beam all at once. As a result, there is no contact between the instrument and the beam, and the initial determination of focal spot size, beam waist location, divergence angles, and beam propagation ratios (M2) are easily and almost instantly obtained. Focal spot location can be measured several times per second and indicate if there is any focal spot shift during critical start-up moments. ISO 11146 compliance ensures the accuracy and reproducibility of all measurements.
"BeamWatch delivers real-time non-contact measurements using the Rayleigh-scattering properties of air molecules," stated Gary Wagner, General Manager, Ophir Photonics (U.S.). "This is a well-documented technique that delivers consistent results in everything from chemical solution analysis to atmospheric LIDAR studies. By capturing the scattered laser light, BeamWatch avoids contact with the beam, which means no power restrictions, and provides the equivalent of simultaneous measurement slices along the entire FOV of the camera."
BeamWatch is a compact, easy-to-use system that monitors high power YAG, fiber, and diode lasers in the 980-1080nm range. It charts all beam measurements over time in industrial material processing applications, such as welding and cutting operations in automotive, heavy equipment, and appliance manufacturing, or in oil & gas drilling. BeamWatch measures key beam size, position, and quality parameters, including focus spot size, waist width, and beam propagation parameter (M2). High magnification optics measure beams with spot sizes down to 55µm, allowing for smaller, more precise cuts with less waste of material. BeamWatch also supports dual axis measurement, which lets users see the laser beam from two orthogonal axes, providing detailed information about how the laser is operating. Focal shift can be tracked on both axes. System measurements can be used to determine the roundness of the beam or the presence of astigmatism.
Availability & Pricing
Ophir BeamWatch is available now. OEM prices available on request.
BeamWatch DATA SHEET available here