This section provides overview, applications, and principles of optical power meters. Also, please take a look at the list of 12 optical power meter manufacturers and their company rankings.
Optical power meter is a generic term for a device used to measure the intensity of light.
The name "optical power meter" is used especially when measuring the intensity of light used for optical fiber communications. There are various names depending on the type of light to be measured and the unit system of measurement. Other names include laser power meter, irradiance meter, luminous intensity meter, and illuminance meter.
Not only do these have different names, but they also differ in the units used to display the measurement results.
However, they all still represent the intensity of light.
Optical power meters are extremely versatile as a device for measuring light intensity and are used to measure the output of various light sources, including communication wavelength light sources for optical fiber communications and general-purpose light sources such as lasers and LEDs.
For this reason, many hand-held types are available, which are inexpensive and small in size.
Since exposure to too much intense light can be toxic to living organisms, it is essential to measure the intensity of the light used to safely and correctly handle laser light sources and other light sources.
Optical power meters consists of a semiconductor sensor for measuring light intensity and a display-like indicator that outputs the results.
The semiconductor sensor used is a photodiode sensor that measures the light intensity as a current value by the photoelectric effect, and a thermopile sensor or pyroelectric sensor that measures the temperature change when the sensor receives light.
Photodiode sensors, in particular, can convert the number of photons received into a current value with high linearity and are used in many optical power meters.
Since the efficiency of conversion to current value and temperature variation in these sensors varies depending on the wavelength of light received, the sensors must be correctly calibrated at each wavelength to ensure the authenticity of the measurement results.
In some cases, the signal may be amplified using a sensor input amplifier to compensate for less sensitive wavelength bands. Optical power meters cannot measure the wavelength of light because they are only devices for measuring the intensity of light.
Although the wavelength and intensity of light are displayed as the measurement result, it should be noted that this wavelength is not what is measured but rather that the user is using a calibration optimized for that wavelength, which is set by the user himself for the measurement.
*Including some distributors, etc.
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