Aligning the Beam

A few weeks ago, Aran, one of the researchers taught me how to walk the beam. Unfortunately, this learning experience resulted in messing up the previous alignment. It turns out that the previous alignment was crucial to getting our laser into the fiber. It is extremely difficult to align the beam. In essence, we are trying to get a laser beam into the optic fiber, which is very thin, at the most precise angle possible.

For the past two lab days, I have been working to achieve the precise angle at which maximum output is attained. Professor Kleinert describes this process as a grid with minimum and maximum values. There is one value in the center of the grid that produces the absolute maximum. You systematically adjust until you reach the center. So far I have managed to get a small beam come out of the optic fiber cable. But small is not enough.