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Continuous laser power?

Discussion in 'LEDs and Optoelectronics' started by lynkynpark86, Mar 8, 2012.

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  1. lynkynpark86


    Oct 22, 2011
    I'm working on a laser security system, and I have most of it figured out, except for this: Can I keep a laser plugged in for long periods of time without damage to the laser, it's surroundings, or the object it's pointed at? It'd be a low-power one, like on presentation remotes. Also, how much power would this use?
  2. (*steve*)

    (*steve*) ¡sǝpodᴉʇuɐ ǝɥʇ ɹɐǝɥd Moderator

    Jan 21, 2010
    The laser (assuming it isn't overdriven and gets hot) will operate for tens of thousands of hours. Consider CD, DVD and Blueray players which read the media using lasers.

    A laser rated at under a couple of mW will require perhaps 50 to 100mW of power to drive it. (I've never actually checked -- I'm embarrassed to say -- but they run for quite a while from teeny tiny batteries)
  3. john monks

    john monks

    Mar 9, 2012

    Red lasers, 660nm, generally get weaker through time. So you probably want to use in infra-red laser 1100-1550nm and in the pulsed mode You might consider using about 1uS pulse width with a 1mS period. This will keep the beam invisible and will last for many thousands of hours or even decades. And the beam can be distinguished from ambient light.
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