Title: Introduction to Lasers and Optics (Student Guide, Laboratories, and Demonstrations)
Introduction to Lasers and Optics is an introductory course for students who have limited prior knowledge of lasers, optics, or photonics. The purpose of this course is to provide entering students with an overview of the technology and its applications. This modular course requires no prerequisites, and can be taught for one or two-credits in the first term. The course contains 15 modules that cover topics such as the spectrum of light, laboratory safety, polarization, mirrors and lenses, and more. These modules can be used all together or faculty can select the appropriate number of modules to fit the desired breadth and depth of study for the course. This course introduces the basic principles of light, lasers and laser safety that are needed to study specific types of laser systems. It also provides exposure to the topics that make up the foundation for studying the applications of lasers in telecommunications, electro-optical displays, biomedical equipment, manufacturing/materials processing, defense/homeland security, environmental monitoring, and nanotechnology.
There are seven laboratory demonstrations and activities that illustrate key concepts and support hands-on learning. It is recommended that the activities contained in this resource be set up by a teaching assistant or instructor and used to demonstrate concepts discussed in the modules of the course. The seven demonstrations are Spectrum of Light, The Polarization of Light, Optical Filters, Prisms and Lenses, Interference and Diffraction with a Single Slit, Interference and Diffraction with a Pinhole, and Beam Divergence.
A Reference Guide for Instructors is available for course instructors.
Author(s): OP-TEC: National Center for Optics and Photonics Education
Category: General Optics & Photonics
Recommended Grade Level: College – 1st year
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