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Proceedings Paper

Detection of errant laser beams
Author(s): Arthur F. D. S. Taylor; Stanley A. Edwards; J. Arwel Barrett; Anthony M. Bandle
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Paper Abstract

The new generation of automated laser machine tools poses problems for those responsible for setting safety standards. While traditional safeguarding will frustrate full exploitation of this hybrid technology, wholesale abandonment of effective containment in favour of safety monitoring and control systems is unlikely to be acceptable. Long term, quantitative risk assessment will resolve this dilemma. Short term, guide lines will have to be derived from practical considerations of the laser facility design, materials, primary safety devices and procedures. Earlier risk assessments are reviewed relative to the emerging perspective of high average power laser installations. Aspects of extended beam delivery systems and equipment utilization and maintenance are examined to assess possible interaction with operational safety and in particular the potential to adversely influence errant laser beam occurrances (ELBO). To satisfy international safety standards for a laser enclosure which offers flexibility and is cost effective a detection system is described which continuously surveys the inside of the enclosure. Extensive trials have been carried out with high average power lasers (up to 10kW) where a range of engineering materials has been exposed to a laser beam. It is shown that the ratio of detection and shut down time to the burn through time can be an acceptable risk and thus indicate which materials will prove adequate.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 October 1990
PDF: 14 pages
Proc. SPIE 1276, CO2 Lasers and Applications II, (1 October 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.20545
Show Author Affiliations
Arthur F. D. S. Taylor, UKAEA Technology (United Kingdom)
Stanley A. Edwards, UKAEA Technology (United Kingdom)
J. Arwel Barrett, Health and Safety Executive (United Kingdom)
Anthony M. Bandle, Health and Safety Executive (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1276:
CO2 Lasers and Applications II
Hans Opower, Editor(s)

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