Green Laser Pointer

Before the laser pointer appeared, most people only saw laser beams in science fiction movies. Today, laser beams can be seen in lecture theaters and conference rooms every day. They are a more convenient alternative to a long pointing stick, and they have a long range which allows them to be used outdoors. The beams were red in the early days but green is the most common color now. A green laser pointer has about fifty times the brightness of a red one, for practically the same price. They are inexpensive and popular gadgets, but buyers need to be aware of the local laws that apply to their use.

A green laser pointer is about the size of a fountain pen. For a device that small, it has a surprising number of parts inside it. It is powered by a single AAA battery that is located in the middle of the pointer. The laser diode and other parts that create the laser beam are located near the tip, while the switch is normally located at the other end. Some pointers have a switch that simply turns on and off, but others also have a momentary switch that creates a short pulse of laser light when pushed. Most lasers pointers come in a sturdy carry case and have a lanyard or a pocket clip attached to them.

Green light has a shorter wavelength than red light, which makes a green laser beam appear much brighter than a red one. Most of the early laser pointers produced a red beam because that type was the cheapest to manufacture. A red beam is produced directly from an inexpensive laser diode, but there is still no laser diode that can directly produce a green beam. Instead, the beam from an infrared laser diode is passed though several crystals and other components to change its wavelength to that of green light. This complexity made the green laser pointer very expensive to manufacture in the early days, and it was not until recently that one could be bought for the same price as a red laser pointer.

The perfectly straight beam created by a green laser pointer has many applications. The most common use is as a pointer during presentations, as it avoids the need to wield a long and heavy stick around which can get tiring after a while. Rather than stand in front of the material being presented, the user can stand off to the side and give the audience a clearer view. Astronomers use laser pointers to align their equipment and point out objects in the night sky. Shooters and hunters also use laser pointers to sight their weapons on a target. Laser pointers can even be used for fun, by tracing outlines on surfaces far away from the user, such as the wall of a building.

The main features to look for when choosing a green laser pointer are its construction, range, power output, focus, beam diameter, and lifetime. The body should be all metal and have no plastic parts that can break off. A high range is important for astronomy and other outdoor activities, but it is not important if the pointer will only be used indoors. The power output should be 1mW or less for indoor use but 5mW is better for outdoor use. An adjustable focus and a small beam diameter are good features to have. A laser pointer should provide thousands of hours of use over its lifetime. Waterproof models are also available for divers and anyone else who needs to use a laser pointer in wet conditions.

A green laser pointer should always be treated with caution, no matter how low powered it may be. It is not a toy and should never be given to a child to play with. Users should be careful not to shine the laser beam at other people or animals. To avoid the risk of eye damage, never look directly into the beam. The occasional sweep past the eyes will probably have no lasting effect, but it is better to avoid exposure when possible. Buyers need to be aware that many countries have strict laws regarding the sale and possession of laser pointers, and that shining a laser at an aircraft can even result in jail time.

This Green Laser Pointer Review is Written/Updated on Dec 11th, 2009 and filed under Consumer Electronics. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

2 Responses for “Green Laser Pointer”

  1. beamq says:

    Some laser pointers can be powered by CR2 batteries and CR123A batteries.

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