Photon Inc has launched the FireWire BeamPro, a beam profiler. It is easily moved between different laptop and desktop computers without requiring the installation of a frame grabber card. This is especially desirable in applications where a high-precision, yet portable beam-profiling solution is required.
The FireWire BeamPro Model 2523 is a 2/3-inch format (9 x 6.7mm) CCD with 6.45µm pixels, and the Model 2512 is a 1/2-inch format (6.5 x 4.8mm) CCD with 8.3µm pixels. The system measures both continuous wave and pulsed beams over the wavelength range of 190-1100nm. The small form factor of 49 x 62 x 62mm makes it easy to insert into optical paths. The nominal dynamic range of this array is 72dB (12 bits of digitisation), and using extended range imaging, profiles with a dynamic range as a high as 144dB (~24 bits of digitisation) can be obtained.
Achieving this dynamic range previously required more expensive silicon-based detector arrays. Very high dynamic range is important in many applications, especially lens characterisation, where lens aberrations are apparent from faint features around a strong central peak in the beam profile.