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Type: Conference paper
Title: Dynamic laser beam stabilization for terahertz systems
Author: Chua, G.
Rainsford, T.
Tan, W.
Linke, I.
Citation: Photonics: Design, Technology, and Packaging III, / Wieslaw Z. Krolikowski, Costas M. Soukoulis, Ping Koy Lam, Timothy J. Davis, Shanhui Fan, Yuri S. Kivshar (eds.)
Publisher: SPIE
Publisher Place: CDROM
Issue Date: 2008
Series/Report no.: Proceedings of SPIE ; 6801
ISBN: 9780819469724
ISSN: 0277-786X
Conference Name: Microelectronics, MEMS, and Nanotechology (2007 : Canberra, Australia)
Editor: Derek Abbott
Statement of
Gin-Han Chua; Tamath Rainsford; Wee Kiat Tan and Ian Linke
Abstract: One of the great difficulties of carrying out Terahertz experiments is the alignment of the laser beam that is used to generate the Terahertz radiation. High precision and stability of the beam direction is required over long time periods. Manual adjustments must be made regularly due to the undesired fluctuations of the laser beam direction. A dynamic laser beam alignment system actively reduces misalignment from vibration sources, thermal gradients and mechanical creep. Commercial automatic systems for laser beam stabilization exist but are expensive especially when they must be employed in multiples. We have designed a system that is straightforward and inexpensive using a simple mirror actuation device based on the concept of thermal expansion. Nichrome wire coils surrounding four aluminium rods are used in the mirror actuator. By varying the current through these coils the amount of expansion caused by the dissipated heat in the rods can be controlled. Our circuit consists of a number of stages including a novel feedback design that prevents the rod from ever reaching its maximum length. Our hardware implementation is able to automatically compensate laser beam pointing in real-time and over extended periods of time.
Description: From Conference Volume 6801
Rights: Copyright © 2008 SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering.
DOI: 10.1117/12.758730
Appears in Collections:Aurora harvest
Electrical and Electronic Engineering publications

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