The term laser head is used with completely different meanings:
- It can be a gain module (or laser module, pump chamber), i.e., an assembly containing a mounted gain medium, usually together with other parts for pumping and possibly cooling the medium. For optical pumping, a laser head can contain arc lamps or flash lamps, laser diodes, or a connection to a fiber-coupled pump source. A complete laser is obtained by placing a laser head in a laser resonator (see Figure 1). Laser heads (without resonators) can often be purchased separately, so that different kinds of laser resonators can be built, depending on the specific demands.
- A laser head may also be an assembly containing the complete optical setup (with the laser resonator), possibly excluding the power supply and fiber-coupled pump diodes, which are then in one or two separate housings.
- In laser-based manufacturing, such as laser cutting, welding or soldering, a laser head can be the assembly from which the laser beam exits toward the workpiece. A laser cutting head (or other laser processing head) may not contain the laser source, but the focusing optics, a protection glass, and also additional facilities e.g. to direct a gas flow to the cutting zone. The light may enter the laser head via a high power optical fiber cable. See the article on laser processing heads for more details.
Questions and Comments from Users
Here you can submit questions and comments. As far as they get accepted by the author, they will appear above this paragraph together with the author’s answer. The author will decide on acceptance based on certain criteria. Essentially, the issue must be of sufficiently broad interest.
Please do not enter personal data here; we would otherwise delete it soon. (See also our privacy declaration.) If you wish to receive personal feedback or consultancy from the author, please contact him e.g. via e-mail.
By submitting the information, you give your consent to the potential publication of your inputs on our website according to our rules. (If you later retract your consent, we will delete those inputs.) As your inputs are first reviewed by the author, they may be published with some delay.
See also: laser processing heads, lasers, pump chambers, laser gain media, diode-pumped lasers, lamp-pumped lasers, laser cooling units
and other articles in the category laser devices and laser physics