Whether there are any technical issues concerning our products or any general questions, we are always willing to answer it as fast as possible via email or phone. In order to save both our and our clients time, we have provided a list of frequently asked questions.
Frequently Asked Questions:
• Q: What type of power supply should I use ?
A: It should be 5V output power and 3 A current for DPSS lasers and 1 A for diode lasers. We highly recommend to use the same power supply as we offer on our website. Otherwise we cannot ensure that the laser would work the same as it was tested during production. Note: Some lasers can draw a little more current at the moment of turn on, compared to specified.
• Q: How should I cool Matchbox 2 ?
Diode laser typically requires 5 W heat dissipation so basically such laser could be cooled when attached to any optical table or cooling device.
DPSS laser typically requires 15 W heat dissipation so such laser should be cooled using our air-cooled heatsink (AM-H3) or Adapter to M6 with water cooling option (AM-H4).
• Q: Power has dropped drastically. What happened ?
A: Please check if heat dissipation is sufficient. Launch the laser control software, check whether the TEC is not operating at 100% capacity. What is the voltage between +5 Vcc and GND pins? It should be not less than 4.9 V and not exceed 5.5 V. In case the voltage is different, wires might be too long or too thin or other components are involved that might cause voltage drop/increase.
• Q: How to be sure that laser gets enough cooling ?
A: During production, our lasers are tested on a large aluminum breadboard - this is one example how to dissipate heat. Keep in mind that steel has very poor thermal conductivity, therefore conventional optical tables and breadboards are not suitable for heatsinking of DPSS lasers. Customer should always use thermal grease when mounting the laser. Body temperature of the laser should not exceed about 35°C, and the TEC load should not exceed 80%, with rare exceptions. Diode laser needs no more than 7,5 W heat dissipation. DPSS lasers usually require more – about 15 W heat dissipation. All diode lasers and majority of DPSS lasers in the MATCHBOX 2 series could work properly attached to our forced air cooler.
• Q: What accessories are needed in order to use Matchbox laser ?
A: The MATCHBOX 2 series is designed for OEM applications. Integrators can install the laser without any other accessories, just by providing 5 V power and UART control signals to corresponding pins on the back of the laser. However for quick setup, a breakout PCB or a breakout cable is a good help to start the laser and connect it to a PC via USB. Breakout PCB and a standard USB cable is always included in the laser package free of charge. Also power supply and AC power cable are necessary. You should have in mind that power supply should be ordered separately and that power cable is not included in the package with the power supply.
• Q: What is the breakout PCB ?
A: Breakout PCB is a small printed circuit board attachable directly to the pins of the laser. This electronics board features a soldered DC power cable, an SMA modulation signal cable, a fan drive cable. Furthermore it incorporates a UART-to-USB converter chip (SiLabs) and a micro USB socket.
• Q: I changed the laser power in the control software, but after restart of the system the new power setting was not saved ?
A: New parameters are not saved in the microcontroller of the laser unless ‘Device functions → Save settings’ is activated. This is done to save EPROM write resource.
• Q: What fiber core diameter do you use ?
A: We use fibers from many different vendors. Whether you need to know the actual fiber details, please contact us in order to get detailed information, such as core diameter or NA of the fiber.
• Q: When do I have to use FC/PC and FC/ APC fiber connector ?
A: We recommend to use FC/APC for SLM lasers - this is to avoid back-reflections from a polished fiber tip to the laser cavity. In all other cases both FC/PC or FC/APC connectors can be used, depending on users preference.
• Q: Should I ensure grounding for the laser ?
A: We recommend that the laser would be mounted to a breadboard which is properly grounded. Electrical socket where power supply is connected must be grounded too. We sell power supplies having grounded pin only.
• Q: Can I modulate the laser with PWM square wave ?
A: Yes. It could be modulated using computer control, by sending commands over the UART interface.
• Q: Do I get a replacement if the laser is broken ?
A: Lasers within warranty period are repaired or replaced free-of-charge. Warranty becomes obsolete in cases indicated in the chapter ‘Warranty’.
• Q: I have ordered an SLM laser, but can observe more than one longitudinal mode. How can I solve this problem ?
A: It is possible that laser is working at non-optimal temperature point. First step is to make sure if the laser gets enough heat dissipation. Second step is to adjust laser diode (or cavity) temperature using the laser control software. For this access level 2 is needed. Please contact Integrated Optics, UAB for further instructions.
• Q: Laser is working, but it's body is very hot.
A: First of all it means that laser diode should be fine, but it could be that heat dissipation is not sufficient. You should check how much Amperes does the laser consume. It should be no more than 1,5 A for diode lasers and no more 4 A for DPSS lasers.
• Q: Laser emits no light at all. Power is 0 mW.
A: Firstly. internal coldplate of the laser could be more than 45 C temperature. Second option is that laser fiber could be not fully straightened up or even damaged. You should check for any damages on the fiber itself or its connector. Recommendations: Before turning the laser on, proper cooling of the laser should be ensured. Laser should be mounted using thermal grease and the screws that were provided with the laser. Please make sure that thermal grease is put very evenly and covers whole bottom of the laser. If laser is fiber coupled, the fiber should be carefully straightened up first.
• Q: How hard should I screw the laser ?
A: Recommended Tightening torque is 0.25 - 0.35 N·m.