Introduction | Laser Damage Threshold Mechanisms | Surface Handling

Surface Handling Considerations
High power lasers do not like contaminants! When the laser beam meets a surface, any foreign particle is likely to burn, splatter, explode or otherwise be destroyed, to the detriment of the coating. During the manufacturing process and through the finished optics being sealed in air-tight bags, TecOptics follows the highest precautions to prevent any unwanted material from settling on the surfaces. However, that is not enough. When the optics arrive at their destination and they are removed from their packing, the technical personnel there must also be extremely careful. Here are some precautions:

  • Never touch a coated surface. Body oils from finger tips can etch a coating, change its properties, and act as a damage center.
  • Only handle optics at the edges and with clean hands and gloves. Oils and grease can slowly migrate around the edge onto the surface.
  • Work in a clean atmosphere. If dust or airborne contaminants (such as oils in the air) settle on the optic's surface the likelihood of laser damage increases greatly.
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