Understanding The Functioning Of Laser Pointers

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A laser beam is a device that emits a powerful laser (a beam of light) onto a surface in the form of a colored dot. These devices are commonly applied in public presentations. Here, they are used to create focus on one area. Kindly note that they are also commonly used for entertainment and fun. This write-up looks at the performance of laser pointers.

The functioning of a laser pointer

To understand how a laser pointer works, you must understand its components. The following are the top components of a laser pointer and how they function;

1. The energy source

As the name suggests, this is the source of power or energy. It provides the power required to run the laser pointer. The energy source may differ depending on the type of laser pointer. Note that the energy source may also influence the performance and quality of the laser pointer. Batteries can power laser pointers.

2. The lasing medium

This is the part of the pointer that gets powered by the energy source. There are two primary forms of laser mediums; light and electricity laser mediums. The former comes in the form of minerals, liquid, or gas.

Interesting to know; the first laser pointer to be invented used rubies as their lasing medium. It is known as a ruby laser pointer.

The lasing medium is usually activated to release energy. The discharged energy is usually in the form of monochromatic (one-color) radiation. The color of the light emitted by a laser pointer may differ depending on the type. The most common colors are green, blue, and yellow. However, as the term monochromatic indicates, a single laser cannot emit differently colored lights.

3. The resonator

The primary role of the resonator is to hold the energy in the form of monochromatic radiation, then release it once it has built up. Note that the energy cannot be released until it reaches a specific level. However, this usually takes a short time. This component is typically made up of other sub-components. For instance, there are two mirrors on each side of the lasing medium. One of the mirrors helps reflect light, and the other one splits it among the lasing medium and the exit point.

Another role for the resonator is to align the light in a single direction for the cohesion of the device. The bouncing of light between the two mirrors helps make this possible.

The brightness of the light emitted by the laser is normally determined by its wavelength, type, and strength. According to research, green lasers are normally brighter. This makes them more expensive. Their brightness is attributed to their short wavelength.


When choosing a laser pointer, one of the first things to consider is the type of laser pointer. Understanding the different types of laser pointers and how they function will help make the decision-making process easier. Once you have determined the best type of device, the other thing to consider is the range and strength of the laser pointer. It would also be wise to look into the use or area of application of the device. For instance, applications in large presentations will require laser pointers with a large range and more power.


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