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Thread: Old Copper Vapor Laser tube

  1. #1
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    Default Old Copper Vapor Laser tube

    Here's another old plasma tube that was donated to the VLA by Mr. John Zumdieck of Bellevue, Washington. Originally built by Mathematical Sciences Northwest (now STI Optronics), it was used to demonstrate "magnetic-switch assist for copper vapor lasers," the title of the DOE report from around 1980. the abstract says "A copper-vapor laser has been operated with a drive circuit that employs magnetic compression. Thyratron stress was reduced by magnetic switching, so that extended tube life may be expected. Optical output power was increased with magnetic-switch assist."

    The tube was also mounted on a stump for 30+ years, but cleaned up real nice. Love those massive 6" diameter Brewster windows!

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by Eidetic; 04-10-2018 at 06:31.

  2. #2
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    Default

    I would love to see that running! It is a real beauty.

  3. #3
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    CVLs and HeCds have the prettiest hardware. CVLs have some serious CERN looks about them. HeCds look like they belong in Frankenstein's lab. Awesome share!

  4. #4
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    Portland
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    Thanks for sharing Bob!

    -Adam
    Support your local Janitor- not solicited .

    Laser (the acronym derived from Light Amplification by Stimulated Emissions of Radiation) is a spectacular manifestation of this process. It is a source which emits a kind of light of unrivaled purity and intensity not found in any of the previously known sources of radiation. - Lasers & Non-Linear Optics, B.B. Laud.

  5. #5
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    WOW! That is a really coool looking tube! Did you try to disassemble it to see the internal construction of it?

  6. #6
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    I started to disassemble it, hoping at least to remove the heat shield to get all the leaves and sticks out. Many of the bolts were corroded, so I left them alone and blasted the debris out with the hose. Under the heat shield is a large glass tube held with rubber gaskets to the stainless steel end plates. There is ceramic lining the inside of that tube. The Brewster windows are about 20mm thick. I took them off to get spider webs and other debris out of the bore.

  7. #7
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    Nov 2017
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    Can you see how the glass tube is held in its place? I mean, how it is fixed between the endplates. Can you see what do the electrodes look like? I'm asking because maybe, one day, I'd like to make a similar tube.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by absolom7691 View Post
    CVLs have some serious CERN looks about them.
    Ain't that the truth!

    Only real bitch is the long start-up cycle. Well, that, and the pulsed output of course. And the high cost of Neon... But they look *amazing*, even when they're off!

    Clandestiny bought an old medical CVL from a guy near me and had me bring it down to Florida for a FLEM several years ago. (Big unit - 6 ft long, 4 ft high, 20 inches wide.) We dicked around with it for an entire day and never could get it going (turned out to be a bad sensor that was forcing it into purge mode just as the lasing was about to start), but we all marveled at how cool the head looked.

    Adam

  9. #9
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    Apr 2005
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    SOUTHAMPTON U.K.
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    That looks amazing. Properly Sci-Fi.

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