Using Zap-It® Laser Paper
CAUTION: Always Wear Laser Protective Eyewear
- Remove the fiber optic beam delivery system before taking the ZAP-IT® burn. The fiber can scramble the mode structure of the beam resulting in a homogenous pattern which does not reveal irregularities in the laser beam.
- For laser beam diameters smaller than ¼” (6.3 mm), use an expansion lens to increase the diameter and achieve greater detail in the ZAP-IT® burn.
- Place a positive lens (most commonly available) in the beam path and take burns at a distance >2.5 times the lens focal length. The beam diameter is greater at this distance than at the origin.
- Increase or decrease the laser output energy level to a point where detail becomes visible on the ZAP-IT® paper.
- Not all lasers have enough output power to leave a detailed burn. For reference, a pulsed laser (femto to 50 milliseconds) with at least 10 millijoules output will usually yield good detail.
- For laser beam pulses that do not leave sufficient detail, leave the paper in place and apply several pulses.
The imprint on ZAP-IT® paper provides information about:
- Mirror alignment accuracy
- Energy distribution, mode quality and edge definition
- Secondary emissions due to uncoated or mis-placed optics
- Optical damage in the beam path
Save ZAP-IT® burns for historical evaluation and comparison of alignment and beam quality. OEMs and field service personnel commonly use previous burn patterns for quick performance checks.