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A Large-Area PVDF Pyroelectric Sensor for CO 2 Laser Beam Alignment

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3 Author(s)
Mazzoni, M. ; IFAC-CNR, Sesto Fiorentino ; Capineri, L. ; Masotti, L.

We present the design of a large-area (50 mm times 50 mm) polyvynilidene fluoride (PVDF) pyroelectric sensor array for industrial CO2 (lambda = 10.6 mum) laser beam positioning. The array dimensions were chosen to match the area typically monitored in the alignment procedure of external optics (beam steering moving arm system, for example) used to redirect the laser beam from the laser output window to a remote working station. The instrument is provided with a tilted, high reflection, ZnSe plate which partially transmits the laser beam onto the sensor array. From positioning simulations with a Gaussian laser intensity profile with a sigma = 3.2 mm standard deviation (equivalent spot size 3sigma cong 20 mm), the positional accuracy along the two orthogonal array dimensions was found to be better than 0.02 mm for an 8 times 8 array and one order of magnitude higher for a 16 times 16 array. The centroid position of a CO2 industrial laser beam was evaluated by integrating the pyroelectric current for a time comparable to the time duration (100-200 ms) of the laser pulses used in the alignment procedure.

Published in:

Sensors Journal, IEEE  (Volume:7 ,  Issue: 8 )