Laser Attenuator

Laser Attenuator


Laser Attenuator Laser-Attenuator-2-line-drwg-322p


U.S. Pat. 4,664,484


      This is a laser attenuator for working safely with high-energy laser light.  The attenuator is placed in the optical path near the source.  The user simply turns the control knob to adjust the output brightness.  Many conventional attenuators simply absorb energy using polarizing filters, limiting the energy levels.  Some attenuators transmit the beam through refracting prisms, degrading the coherency and quality of the beam.  The HinesLab Variable Attenuator uses no refractive surfaces for the exit beam.


     The output beam remains coaxial with the input beam.



      Polarized light enters the housing (from the left side) and reflects sequentially off of four surfaces.  The first surface is a dielectric (non-metallic) crystal, and depending on the angle of incidence, reflects varying amount of light through the optical path.  At Brewster’s angle, 0% of the light is reflected.  Any light which is not reflected through the unit, is transmitted through the first crystal into a very efficient light trap (the block in the center) made up of a stack of razors.




p. 34  p. 35


Hines’ original lab notebook #1 entries for this invention.


      HinesLab is actively seeking licensees to commercialize this technology.  This is not a product being offered for sale to end users.  To discuss licensing, please contact Steve Hines at:


phone:  818-507-5812