The videos from [styropyro] are always amusing and informative. However, ironically for him, he is alarmed that many green laser pointers are more powerful than they are supposed to be. Sure, you often want a powerful laser, but if you think a laser is safe and it isn’t, you could… well… put an eye out. See the video below to see what [styropyro] claims is the brightest laser pointer in the world.
The key is a possibly gray market very large green laser array. It appears to have at least 24 lasers and some pretty serious lenses. He tested the array first with a power supply and it looked like something out of a bad science fiction movie, even at reduced power.
Continue reading “The World’s Brightest Laser Pointer?”
Selective Metal Sintering is cool but slow. Fear not, a technology that was initially developed to smooth and pattern laser beams is here to save the day, according to a new paper by Lawrence Livermore researchers.
In a paper titled “Diode-based additive manufacturing of metals using an optically-addressable light valve,” the researchers lay out a procedure for using an array of high-powered laser diodes among other things to print a whole layer of metal from powdered metal at one time. No more forward and backward, left and right. Just one bright flash and you’re done. Naturally, the technology is still in its infancy, but huge 3D printed metallic parts are something we’ve always hoped for.
According to [Matthews], the first author of the paper, the mojo of the process comes from a customized laser modulator: the Optically Addressable Light Valve which functions similarly to liquid crystal-based projectors but can handle the high energies associated with powerful lasers. There’s more information straight from the paper’s authors in this phys.org interview.
While it’s true that now is the time for direct metal 3D printing, it appears that for the time being the average hacker is stuck with alternative methods for printing metal. While it’s not the same, pewter casting with PLA might suffice.
Thanks to [Kevin] for sending this in!