Laser, its working & hazards


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A laser is a device that generates light by a process called STIMULATED EMISSION.
The acronym LASER stands for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation
Semiconducting lasers are multilayer semiconductor devices that generates a coherent beam of monochromatic light by laser action. A coherent beam resulted which all of the photons are in phase.


Definition of a laser
Emission and absorption of radiation
Population Inversion
Optical Feedback
Fundamentals of laser operation
Laser Hazards

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Laser, its working & hazards

  1. 1. LASERS Presented by :- Sushil Mishra (05311502809) Ketan Gupta (04211503809) Yatin Jain (04811502809) Harshit Jain (05911502809)
  2. 2. Seminar Contents Definition of a laser Emission and absorption of radiation Population Inversion Optical Feedback Fundamentals of laser operation Laser Hazards
  3. 3. Typical Application of LaserThe detection of the binary data stored in the form of pits on the compact disc isdone with the use of a semiconductor laser. The laser is focused to adiameter of about 0.8 mm at the bottom of the disc, but is further focused toabout 1.7 micrometers as it passes through the clear plastic substrate to strikethe reflective layer. The reflected laser will be detected by a photodiode. Moralof the story: without optoelectronics there will no CD player!
  4. 4. 1. Definition of laser A laser is a device that generates light by a process called STIMULATED EMISSION. The acronym LASER stands for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation Semiconducting lasers are multilayer semiconductor devices that generates a coherent beam of monochromatic light by laser action. A coherent beam resulted which all of the photons are in phase.
  5. 5. Another Typical Applicationof Laser – Fibre Optics An example of application is for the light source for fibre optics communication. Light travels down a fibre optics glass at a speed, = c/n, where n = refractive index. Light carries with it information Different wavelength travels at different speed. This induce dispersion and at the receiving end the light is observed to be spread. This is associated with data or information lost. The greater the spread of information, the more loss However, if we start with a more coherent beam then loss can be greatly reduced.
  6. 6. Fibre Optics Communication
  7. 7. 3 Mechanisms of Light EmissionFor atomic systems in thermal equilibrium with theirsurrounding, the emission of light is the result of:AbsorptionAnd subsequently, spontaneous emission of energyThere is another process whereby the atom in an upper energylevel can be triggered or stimulated in phase with the anincoming photon. This process is:Stimulated emissionIt is an important process for laser actionTherefore 3 process 1. Absorptionof light emission: 2. Spontaneous Emission 3. Stimulated Emission
  8. 8. Absorption E1 E2
  9. 9. Spontaneous Emission
  10. 10. Stimulated Emission
  11. 11. Background Physics Consider the ‘stimulated emission’ as shown previously. Stimulated emission is the basis of the laser action. The two photons that have been produced can then generate more photons, and the 4 generated can generate 16 etc… etc… which could result in a cascade of intense monochromatic radiation.
  12. 12. Population InversionTherefore we must have a mechanism where N2 > N1This is called POPULATION INVERSIONPopulation inversion can be created by introducing a so call metastablecentre where electrons can piled up to achieve a situation where more N 2 thanN1The process of attaining a population inversion is called pumping and theobjective is to obtain a non-thermal equilibrium.It is not possible to achieve population inversion with a 2-state system.If the radiation flux is made very large the probability of stimulated emissionand absorption can be made far exceed the rate of spontaneous emission.But in 2-state system, the best we can get is N 1 = N2.To create population inversion, a 3-state system is required.The system is pumped with radiation of energy E31 then atoms in state 3 relaxto state 2 non radiatively.The electrons from E2 will now jump to E1 to give out radiation.
  13. 13. 3 states system
  14. 14. Population InversionWhen a sizable population of electrons resides in upper levels,this condition is called a "population inversion", and it sets thestage for stimulated emission of multiple photons. This is theprecondition for the light amplification which occurs in a LASERand since the emitted photons have a definite time and phaserelation to each other, the light has a high degree of coherence.
  15. 15. Optical Feedback The probability of photon producing a stimulated emission event can be increased by reflecting back through the medium several times. A device is normally fashioned in such a way that the 2 ends are made higly reflective This is term an oscillator cavity or Fabry Perot cavity
  16. 16. Therefore in a laser….Three key elements in a laser•Pumping process prepares amplifying medium in suitable state•Optical power increases on each pass through amplifying medium•If gain exceeds loss, device will oscillate, generating a coherentoutput
  17. 17. Fundamentals of Laser Operation 17
  18. 18. Laser Fundamentals The light emitted from a laser is monochromatic, that is, it is of one color/wavelength. In contrast, ordinary white light is a combination of many colors (or wavelengths) of light. Lasers emit light that is highly directional, that is, laser light is emitted as a relatively narrow beam in a specific direction. Ordinary light, such as from a light bulb, is emitted in many directions away from the source. The light from a laser is said to be coherent, which means that the wavelengths of the laser light are in phase in space and time. Ordinary light can be a mixture of many wavelengths. These three properties of laser light are what can make it more hazardous than ordinary light. Laser light can deposit a lot of energy within a small area. 18
  19. 19. Incandescent vs. Laser Light1. Many wavelengths 1. Monochromatic2. Multidirectional 2. Directional3. Incoherent 3. Coherent 19
  20. 20. Common Components of all Lasers1. Active Medium The active medium may be solid crystals such as ruby or Nd:YAG, liquid dyes, gases like CO2 or Helium/Neon, or semiconductors such as GaAs. Active mediums contain atoms whose electrons may be excited to a metastable energy level by an energy source.2. Excitation Mechanism Excitation mechanisms pump energy into the active medium by one or more of three basic methods; optical, electrical or chemical.3. High Reflectance Mirror A mirror which reflects essentially 100% of the laser light.4. Partially Transmissive Mirror A mirror which reflects less than 100% of the laser light and transmits the remainder. 20
  21. 21. Laser ComponentsGas lasers consist of a gas filled tube placed in thelaser cavity. A voltage (the external pump source) isapplied to the tube to excite the atoms in the gas toa population inversion. The light emitted from thistype of laser is normally continuous wave (CW). 21
  22. 22. Lasing Action1. Energy is applied to a medium raising electrons to an unstable energy level.2. These atoms spontaneously decay to a relatively long-lived, lower energy, metastable state.3. A population inversion is achieved when the majority of atoms have reached this metastable state.4. Lasing action occurs when an electron spontaneously returns to its ground state and produces a photon.5. If the energy from this photon is of the precise wavelength, it will stimulate the production of another photon of the same wavelength and resulting in a cascading effect.6. The highly reflective mirror and partially reflective mirror continue the reaction by directing photons back through the medium along the long axis of the laser.7. The partially reflective mirror allows the transmission of a small amount of coherent radiation that we observe as the “beam”.8. Laser radiation will continue as long as energy is applied to the lasing medium. 22
  23. 23. Lasing Action Diagram Excited State Spontaneous Energy Emission Metastable State Stimulated Emission of Radiation ygr en Ecu dort nI Ground State 23
  24. 24. Laser Output Continuous Output (CW) Pulsed Output (P) Energy (Joules)Energy (Watts) Time Time watt (W) - Unit of power or radiant flux (1 watt = 1 joule per second). Joule (J) - A unit of energy Energy (Q) The capacity for doing work. Energy content is commonly used to characterize the output from pulsed lasers and is generally expressed in Joules (J). Irradiance (E) - Power per unit area, expressed in watts per square centimeter. 24
  25. 25. Laser Hazards 25
  26. 26. Types of Laser Hazards1. Eye : Acute exposure of the eye to lasers of certain wavelengths and power can cause corneal or retinal burns (or both). Chronic exposure to excessive levels may cause corneal or lenticular opacities (cataracts) or retinal injury.2. Skin : Acute exposure to high levels of optical radiation may cause skin burns; while carcinogenesis may occur for ultraviolet wavelengths (290-320 nm).3. Chemical : Some lasers require hazardous or toxic substances to operate (i.e., chemical dye, Excimer lasers).4. Electrical : Most lasers utilize high voltages that can be lethal.5. Fire : The solvents used in dye lasers are flammable. High voltage pulse or flash lamps may cause ignition. Flammable materials may be ignited by direct beams or specular reflections from high power continuous wave (CW) infrared lasers. 26
  27. 27. Lasers and Eyes What are the effects of laser energy on the eye? Laser light in the visible to near infrared spectrum (i.e., 400 - 1400 nm) can cause damage to the retina resulting in scotoma (blind spot in the fovea). This wave band is also know as the "retinal hazard region". Laser light in the ultraviolet (290 - 400 nm) or far infrared (1400 - 10,600 nm) spectrum can cause damage to the cornea and/or to the lens. Photoacoustic retinal damage may be associated with an audible "pop" at the time of exposure. Visual disorientation due to retinal damage may not be apparent to the operator until considerable thermal damage has occurred. 27
  28. 28. Laser Class The following criteria are used to classify lasers: 1. Wavelength. If the laser is designed to emit multiple wavelengths the classification is based on the most hazardous wavelength. 2. For continuous wave (CW) or repetitively pulsed lasers the average power output (Watts) and limiting exposure time inherent in the design are considered. 3. For pulsed lasers the total energy per pulse (Joule), pulse duration, pulse repetition frequency and emergent beam radiant exposure are considered. 28
  29. 29. Control Measures and Personal Protective Equipment 29
  30. 30. CONTROL MEASURESEngineering Controls  Interlocks  Enclosed beamAdministrative Controls  Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)  TrainingPersonnel Protective Equipment (PPE)  Eye protection 30
  31. 31. Common Laser Signs and Labels 31
  32. 32. 1-9 sUSHIL9-16 Yatin17-24 Ketan25-31 Harshit