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Ø1" Beam Shutter,
Ø1/2" Beam Shutter,
K-Cube Compact Shutter Controller
Benchtop Shutter Controller
Thorlabs' Optical Shutters utilize a rotary, electro-mechanical actuator to provide millisecond shutter operation. During operation, these shutters remain in a closed position and then open when a pulse control signal is applied by an external controller. As long as the control voltage to the optical shutter remains high, the shutter stays open, but as soon as the voltage goes low, the shutter closes, providing inherent "fail-safe" operation. The frequency at which the device is opened and closed can be controlled. An optical sensor, which detects the shutter blade position in the housing, provides information that confirms the state of the optical shutter position. This makes it ideal in applications where a laser safety lockout is required.
In order to ensure that your optical shutter has a long lifetime, the aperture should not be located near the focus of a laser beam. Please note that the solenoid's performance is not guaranteed if the case temperature exceeds 50 °C. Significant heat buildup will occur if the aperture is closed for a long time while a high-power laser is incident on the shutter.
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Shutter Response Diagram
SH05(/M) and SH1(/M) Pin Diagram
SC10 Pin Diagrams
**2.2 V Min (500 Ohm Load), 5 V Max (Open Circuit)
KSC101 Pin Diagrams
Software for the SC10 Shutter Controller
Thorlabs offers two platforms to drive our wide range of motion controllers: our Kinesis® software package or the legacy APT™ (Advanced Positioning Technology) software package. Either package can be used to control devices in the Kinesis family, which covers a wide range of motion controllers ranging from small, low-powered, single-channel drivers (such as the K-Cubes™ and T-Cubes™) to high-power, multi-channel, modular 19" rack nanopositioning systems (the APT Rack System).
The Kinesis Software features .NET controls which can be used by 3rd party developers working in the latest C#, Visual Basic, LabVIEW™, or any .NET compatible languages to create custom applications. Low-level DLL libraries are included for applications not expected to use the .NET framework. A Central Sequence Manager supports integration and synchronization of all Thorlabs motion control hardware.
Kinesis GUI Screen
APT GUI Screen
Our legacy APT System Software platform offers ActiveX-based controls which can be used by 3rd party developers working on C#, Visual Basic, LabVIEW™, or any Active-X compatible languages to create custom applications and includes a simulator mode to assist in developing custom applications without requiring hardware.
By providing these common software platforms, Thorlabs has ensured that users can easily mix and match any of the Kinesis and APT controllers in a single application, while only having to learn a single set of software tools. In this way, it is perfectly feasible to combine any of the controllers from single-axis to multi-axis systems and control all from a single, PC-based unified software interface.
The software packages allow two methods of usage: graphical user interface (GUI) utilities for direct interaction with and control of the controllers 'out of the box', and a set of programming interfaces that allow custom-integrated positioning and alignment solutions to be easily programmed in the development language of choice.
A range of video tutorials is available to help explain our APT system software. These tutorials provide an overview of the software and the APT Config utility. Additionally, a tutorial video is available to explain how to select simulator mode within the software, which allows the user to experiment with the software without a controller connected. Please select the APT Tutorials tab above to view these videos, which are also available on the software CD included with the controllers.
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Thorlabs' Smart Pack Initiative is aimed at waste minimization while still maintaining adequate protection for our products. By eliminating any unnecessary packaging, implementing packaging design changes, and utilizing eco-friendly packaging materials for our customers when possible, this initiative seeks to improve the environmental impact of our product packaging. Products listed above are now shipped in re-engineered packaging that minimizes the weight and the use of non-recyclable materials.b As we move through our product line, we will indicate re-engineered packages with our Smart Pack logo.
Laser Safety and Classification
Safe practices and proper usage of safety equipment should be taken into consideration when operating lasers. The eye is susceptible to injury, even from very low levels of laser light. Thorlabs offers a range of laser safety accessories that can be used to reduce the risk of accidents or injuries. Laser emission in the visible and near infrared spectral ranges has the greatest potential for retinal injury, as the cornea and lens are transparent to those wavelengths, and the lens can focus the laser energy onto the retina.
Safe Practices and Light Safety Accessories
Lasers are categorized into different classes according to their ability to cause eye and other damage. The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) is a global organization that prepares and publishes international standards for all electrical, electronic, and related technologies. The IEC document 60825-1 outlines the safety of laser products. A description of each class of laser is given below:
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Open and Close Time of the SH05 Shutter When Driven with the KSC101 Controller
The SH05(/M) optical beam shutter has a Ø1/2" aperture with a single blade that slides across the aperture. This shutter has a close activation time of ≤4.08 ms when used with the SC10 or KSC101 controller. A graph that shows the open and close times of the optical shutter driven with the KSC101 controller is shown to the right. Please see the Specs tab for additional specifications.
Both sides of this shutter's aperture are internally SM05 (0.535"-40) threaded for compatablity with our SM05 Lens Tubes. For post mounting, the SH05(/M) has three 8-32 (M4) tapped holes.
For applications requiring blades that open from the center, we offer a Ø1/2" diaphragm shutter and controller with five stainless steel blades.
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The SH1(/M) optical beam shutter has a Ø1" aperture with a single blade that slides across the aperture. This shutter has a close activation of <10 ms when used with the SC10 Shutter Controller (sold separately below). Please note that this optical shutter is not compatible with the KSC101 controller; it can be used with third-party controllers. See the Specs tab for specifications.
Both sides of the aperture are internally SM1 (1.035"-40) threaded for compatibility with our SM1 Lens Tubes. The SH1(/M) has three 8-32 (M4) tapped holes for post mounting and 4-40 taps for use with our 30 mm Cage Components.
For applications requiring blades that open from the center, we offer a Ø1" diaphragm shutter and controller with five stainless steel blades.
Thorlabs' SC10 Shutter Controller provides an easy-to-use control interface for our SH05 and SH1 Optical Shutters. The shutter can be controlled by hand using the buttons on the front of the unit, and the back includes a BNC input for external triggering, a BNC output for synchronization with other equipment, and an RS-232 port for remote computer control. Dedicated lights on the front panel reveal if the shutter is enabled and if the shutter is open. It also features a keyswitch that enables opening of the shutter, helping to comply with lab laser safety requirements. In addition, it incorporates a safety interlock that overrides all system commands and closes the shutter. If the interlock is tripped, the keyswitch must be cycled to resume operations.
The easy-to-read LCD front panel provides access to the same commands as the included LabVIEW and LabWindows software packages. In addition to simply opening or closing the shutter, a repeating sequence of open and close events with exposure times as low as 10 ms can be set up and initiated either by a front panel button, a TTL pulse (+5 V), or a computer command via RS-232. Alternatively, the shutter can be synchronized to follow the rising and falling edges of an external voltage supplied over BNC.
The optical shutter controller includes LabVIEW VI's suitable for integrating into existing LabVIEW applications. A standalone executable written in LabWindows/CVI is also provided, allowing remote computer control of the SC10 without any additional programming. See the SC10 Software tab to download these packages.
The shutter controller's BNC output allows it to double as a standalone digital delay generator with 1 ms resolution and 0.1 ms accuracy.
In October 2012, the firmware of the SC10 was updated to address compatibility issues with our SH1 Shutter. For units purchased prior to that date, a free firmware update is available; please see the SC10 Software tab for details.
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Back and Top Views of the KSC101 K-Cube
(See the Pin Diagrams Tab for More Information)
Click to Enlarge KAP101 Adapter)
Thorlabs' KSC101 K-Cube™ Optical Shutter Controller is a compact, 60.0 mm x 60.0 mm x 49.2 mm controller that is designed for use with our SH05(/M) Shutter. The controller features an embedded digital signal processor (DSP) to provide a multitude of flexible operating modes; see the Specs tab for details. Embedded software functionality allows this unit to control solenoid devices using the on-unit menu button, display, and control wheel; using DSP timed operations; or using external trigger signals for operation with third-party equipment. The trigger out connection, defaulted on Trigger 2, allows multiple K-Cube controllers to be connected together for synchronized multi-channel system operation.
The KSC101 is also equipped with built-in safety interlock functionality in the form of a 3.5 mm stereo jack. A shorted connector is included for overriding this connection, while a custom circuit may be created for lab safety applications using the included 3.5 mm stereo connector. The circuit must be closed for the controller to be able to open the shutter. To comply with laser safety requirements, the controller also features a key switch that enables or disables opening of the shutter.
The easy-to-read digital display provides access to the same commands as the included Kinesis® software package. In addition to simply opening or closing the shutter, a repeating sequence of open and close events with exposure times as low as 15 ms can be set up and initiated either by the top panel controls, a TTL pulse (+5 V), or a computer command via USB 3.0.
USB connectivity provides easy 'Plug-and-Play' PC-controlled operation with two available software platforms: our new Kinesis software package or our legacy APT (Advanced Positioning Technology) software package. For more details on both software packages, please see the Motion Control Software tab. For convenience, a 1.5 m long Type A to Type Micro B USB 3.0 cable is included with the KSC101 cube.
Power Supply Options
Male Hirose Connector
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The TC200CAB10 is a 10-foot-long, 6-pin, male-to-male Hirose connector cable that is compatible with the shutters and controllers on this page. The wires in this cable cross as seen in the drawing to the right. This is not a straight-through cable.
This Hirose connector cable can also be cut to any length leaving one connectorized end and one bare end. The colored wire diagram to the right shows the relationship between the six colored wires and the pins in the connector, allowing the cut cable to be incorporated into a variety of custom applications.
For more information on the TC200CAB10, please see the full web presentation.