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Integrating Spheres

  • Made of Durable, Highly Reflective Bulk Material
  • Available With and Without Photodiode
  • 3 and 4 Port Versions with Adapters for Fiber and Photodiode

IS200 Series

FC & SMA Fiber Adapters, Port Plugs
& SM05PD Adapter Included

Directly Compatible
with SM05 Lens Tubes
and 30 mm Cage Systems

Related Items

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Compatible Mounted Photodiodes
Sensor Type Wavelength Range Photodiodes
GaP 150 - 550 nm SM05PD7A
Si 200 - 1100 nm SM05PD2A
Si 350 - 1100 nm SM05PD1A
InGaAs 800 - 1700 nm SM05PD5A
900 - 1700 nm SM05PD4A
Ge 800 - 1800 nm SM05PD6A


  • Ø2" Integrating Sphere in Black Anodized Aluminum Housing
  • Operating Range: 250 - 2500 nm (Unless Limited by the Detector)
  • Equipped with 3 or 4 Ø1/2" Ports for Easy Coupling of Light (Depending on Model)
  • Recessed Ø3 mm Detector Port Allows Direct Connection of Any of Our SM05PD Photodiodes
  • Directly Compatible with SM05 (0.535"-40) Lens Tubes and Our 30 mm Cage Systems
  • Durable White High Reflectance Sphere Material
  • Metric and Imperial Threads for Post Mounting
  • Included Accessories
    • Reflective-Coated Port Plugs (One per Port) SM05CP2C
    • FC Fiber Adapter
    • SMA Fiber Adapter
    • SM05 Adapter (SM05L05) for Mounting SM05PD Photodiodes

The IS200 Integrating Sphere is a general purpose integrating sphere enabling high sensitivity measurements of optical signals. An Integrating Sphere evenly spreads the incoming light by multiple reflections over the entire sphere surface. This makes it the ideal instrument for many applications such as laser power, flux, reflectance and radiance measurements. The Input and Output Ports can be equipped with fiber adapters or closed with the coated Port Plugs (included); the Detector Port is recessed to avoid direct light exposure from the incidental light to the active area of the photodiode. The sphere is manufactured from PTFE based bulk material that has high reflectivity in the 250 - 2500 nm wavelength range (see Specs tab for details) and is resistant to heat, humidity, and high levels of radiation. This reflective surface provides a specific roughness and diffusive reflection properties and should not be cleaned using solvents, as this could damage the inner surface. We only recommend using compresed air for cleaning the inner surface of the integrating spheres. The sphere is compatible with Thorlabs' SM05 (0.535"-40) thread standard as well as our 30 mm cage systems, thereby enabling easy integration into existing setups.

Our IS200 Integrating Spheres are available with either a mounted Si photodiode (350 - 1100 nm), mounted InGaAs photodiode (900 - 1700 nm) or without a detector. When purchasing an Integrating Sphere without a built-in detector, the sphere's operating range is limited by the reflectance wavelength range of 250 - 2500 nm (see the Specs tab). When purchasing the sphere with no detector, any of our SM05PD family of detectors can be mounted to the Ø3 mm detector port using the SM05 threading of the included SM05 Adapter (SM05L05).

Replacement items for the included adapters and port caps can be ordered separately below.

Choose from 5 Models:

  • IS200 & IS200-4: Ø2" Integrating Sphere with 3 or 4 Ports and without a Detector
  • IS236A & IS236A-4: Ø2" Integrating Sphere with SM05PD1B Si Detector (350 to 1100 nm) and 3 or 4 Ports
  • IS210C: Ø2" Integrating Sphere with Anode-Grounded Version of the SM05PD4A InGaAs Detector (900 to 1700 nm) and 3 Ports

For our integrating spheres we offer a calibration service upon request. Please contact your nearest sales office for more information.

Please note that inhomogeneities at the edges of the active area of the detector can generate unwanted capacitance and resistance effects that distort the time-domain response of the photodiode output. These effects are observable when the diode is saturated. If these effects are detrimental to your application, please contact Technical Support for further assistance.

Top Views

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Integrating Sphere with Photodiode and 3 Ports
(IS236A & IS210C)

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Integrating Sphere with Photodiode and 4 Ports

Click to Enlarge

Integrating Sphere Design
(Side View)
Item # IS200 IS200-4 IS236A IS236A-4 IS210C
Detector Type No Detector Si InGaAs
Detector - SM05PD1B Anode-Grounded
Detector Wavelength - 350 - 1100 nm 900 - 1700 nm
Sphere Reflectivity ~99% @ 350 to 1500 nm; >95% @ 250 to 2500 nm
Sphere Diameter 2"
Port Diameter 0.5"
Ports 3 at 0°, 90°,
and Top
4 at 0°, 90°,
180°, and Top
3 at 0°, 90°,
and Top
4 at 0°, 90°,
180°, and Top
3 at 0°, 90°,
and Top
Photodiode Port Ø3 mm for SM05PD
Thermal Stability Up to 250°C
Laser Damage
2 kW/cm2, 7 J/cm2
Dimensions 61 mm x 61 mm x 65 mm (2.4" x 2.4" x 2.56")
Weight 0.35 kg (0.77 lb)

Click to Enlarge

Integrating Sphere Material Reflectivity
IS200 IS200-4 IS236A IS236A-4 IS210C Description (Item #)
X   X   X Ø2" Integrating Sphere with 3 Ports (IS200)
  X   X   Ø2" Integrating Sphere with 4 Ports (IS200-4)
    X X   Large-Area Mounted Silicon Photodiode, 350 - 1100 nm, Anode Grounded (SM05PD1B)
        X Mounted InGaAs Photodiode, 900 - 1700 nm, Anode Grounded (SM05PD4B)
X X X X X FC/PC Fiber Adapter Plate with External SM05 (0.535"-40) Thread (SM05FC)
SMA Fiber Adapter Plate with External SM05 (0.535"-40) Thread (SM05SMA)
SM05 Adapter (SM05L05) for Mounting SM05PD Photodiodes
End Cap Coated with 1 mm Thick Reflective Sphere Material, One per Port (SM05CP2C)

Posted Comments:
Felix Köttig  (posted 2019-09-27 08:46:08.167)
Dear Thorlabs support, I was wondering if you can provide the reflectivity curve of the integrating sphere coating down to 200 nm? Thanks and best regards, Felix Köttig Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light Erlangen, Germany
wskopalik  (posted 2019-10-04 11:08:16.0)
This is a response from Wolfgang at Thorlabs. Thank you very much for your inquiry. Unfortunately we have no data showing the reflectivity below 250nm. At 250nm the reflectivity has already dropped down to 95%. For shorter wavelengths the reflectivity of the sintered PTFE material will drop even further. I will contact you directly to discuss your application in more detail.
Bill Albert  (posted 2019-07-02 19:00:44.777)
I am curious why the effective loss of the integrating sphere is not included in the specifications. If the Integrating Sphere has an effective power loss of 20dB between the input and output ports, the measuring sensor system has lost an effective 20dB of sensitivity. For a sphere with 30dB of loss, the effect is, of course, correspondingly greater. From a systems standpoint, I believe the information would be most helpful for determining the required sensor to mate the sphere with.
MKiess  (posted 2019-07-08 10:02:51.0)
This is a response from Michael at Thorlabs. Thank you very much for inquiry. The effective loss depends on various factors, such as the wavelength of the light, the area of the sensor, and the ports which are used. The theoretical attenuation can be calculated with the wavelength-dependent reflection of the PTFE surface, as shown in the specifications on the webpage. With these values, the sphere surface of approximately 8100mm^2 and the aperture of the outputs, the attenuation can be estimated. In addition there is a gain factor of 1.5 due to multiple reflections, which can be neglected again due to special sphere properties resulting from manufacturing. We also offer models incl. calibration service and desired sensor. I have contacted you directly to select a suitable sensor for your application and provide further assistance.
benjamin.bissig  (posted 2018-01-18 15:52:36.673)
Hi. Do you offer a solution to introduce (thin film on substrate) samples into the sphere?
wskopalik  (posted 2018-01-19 04:44:26.0)
This is a response from Wolfgang at Thorlabs. Thank you very much for your inquiry. We don't offer a ready-to-use solution for this. The integrating spheres have however a lot of possibilities to attach mounts. You could e.g. use the SM05 threading in the ports or also the 4-40 threads which are normally used for our cage sytem. It is important to note that the reflecting surface on the inside of the sphere must not be touched by the sample because this could change the reflectivity of the surface. I will contact you directly to provide further assistance.
hsubon  (posted 2017-05-23 20:23:18.117)
The listed two InGaAs detectors for the integrating sphere IS210C, SM05PD4A and SM05PD5A, are both shown "Cathode-grounded". However, in "Speccs", IS210C shows "Anode-Grounded SM05PD4A". Please clarify which description is correct. Thanks.
wskopalik  (posted 2017-05-24 11:32:18.0)
This is a response from Wolfgang at Thorlabs. Thank you very much for your inquiry. The SM05PD4A and SM05PD5A are both cathode grounded and they can both be attached to the integrating sphere IS200. The IS210C is a bundle of an integrating sphere IS200 and an InGaAs photodiode. The photodiode in this bundle is a special anode grounded version of the SM05PD4A which used to be available as a catalog item and can now be offered as a special. It was called SM05PD4B. The housing and the photodiode in SM05PD4A and SM05PD4B are the same, only the grounding is different. I will contact you directly to provide further assistance.
huke  (posted 2016-06-13 15:32:21.163)
I would like to get an estimate for the efficiency (incoupled light intensity/ outcoupled light intensity) of incoherent light for the full specified wavelength range at all ports. Is this possible?
shallwig  (posted 2016-06-15 06:29:41.0)
This is a response from Stefan at Thorlabs. Thank you for your inquiry. The theoretical attenuation level can be calculated from the reflection of the PTFE, the reflectivity graph can be found in the “specs” Tab, from the sphere surface which is ca. 8100mm2 and the area of the aperture light gets coupled out. The attenuation factor calculated this way allows you to estimate the efficiency. But due to some sphere specific properties (bulky parts of the sphere, joints, ports) this must be decreased by a factor of about 1.5. I have called you to discuss your application in more detail and check if a special meets your requirements.
emtonita  (posted 2015-03-30 14:08:51.517)
Hello! I was wondering: what is the performance of the IS200 at 180nm? I understand the sphere is supposed to work in the range of 250-2500nm at ~99% reflectivity. What is it's reflectivity at 180nm? Thank you, Erin.
shallwig  (posted 2015-03-31 03:24:32.0)
This is a response from Stefan at Thorlabs. Thank you very much for your inquiry. Unfortunately we have no data showing the reflectivity below 250nm . In the “Specs” Tab of the website you can find the reflectivity plot. At 250nm the reflectivity drops down to 95% and for shorter wavelength the reflectivity of the used sintered PTFE will be less. The integrating spheres show significant absorption and fluorescence features for UV light. Any environmental contaminants strengthen this behavior. These features are more pronounced for sintered integrating spheres than pressed ones. There is no special coating for UV available. I will contact you directly to discuss your application in more detail.
patricio_romero  (posted 2015-03-17 17:29:39.497)
Hello I have a IS200-4 Sphere. In one of the caps, when i unscrew it, the Coating part stay inside the sphere, and I only get out the metal cap with the glue (souble contact) on it. Reading the description I see that the coating is PTFE, so: - Would the reflective part whistand forces to remove it? - Once I remove it, would it whistand pressing it with a finger against the metal cap so it glues completely on the metal cap? (seems like only the borders make contact). - Would a piece of parafilm work as protection to press it with my finger or it would contaminate it? If so, what should be "clean enough" to push against the reflective part to fix it in the metal cap?
shallwig  (posted 2015-03-18 10:09:42.0)
This is a response from Stefan at Thorlabs. Thank you very much for your inquiry and please apologize the problems you face with one of the caps of your IS200-4 integrating sphere. This should not happen that the coating part stays inside the sphere when unscrewing the cap. I will contact you directly and we will send you an exchange of the End cap (SM05CP2C). I am sorry for any inconveniences.
michael-miller  (posted 2015-02-23 18:32:41.9)
We have purchased an IS200-4 integrating sphere. Our application is under vacuum. If we were to partially evacuate the interior of the sphere, would we compromise the integrity of the sphere? Thanks
tschalk  (posted 2015-02-25 09:06:58.0)
This is a response from Thomas at Thorlabs. Thank you very much for your inquiry. Our integrating spheres are not designed to be used in vacuum. The housing is anodized which will have a bad influence of the vacuum quality. Otherwise, there is no fundamental reason why the unit shouldn’t work in vacuum conditions. I will contact you directly to discuss your application.
1982ariel  (posted 2015-01-21 15:51:41.24)
Thorlabs hello I think that it would be better to present 3D images option of the products. The kind where you can rotate the product. Some times I need to know if there is a thread or some other standard feature. Ariel
myanakas  (posted 2015-01-21 11:26:02.0)
Response from Mike at Thorlabs: Thank you for your feedback. We will look into the possibility of adding a feature like this in the future. However, The taps, threading, and other design elements of a product can be found in the PDF drawing which can be found by clicking on the red "Docs" icon by the blue item number links. We also offer models that can be viewed and rotated by clicking on the available model files (Step, Solidworks, e-drawing) within the same "Docs" link.
parispapagiorgis  (posted 2014-05-09 13:24:24.853)
I would like to ask, how to clean the inner surface of the sphere, from traces of samples meausered? Are there any solvents or other ways to clean it?
shallwig  (posted 2014-05-12 05:13:39.0)
This is a response from Stefan at Thorlabs. Thank you very much for your inquiry. We only recommend to use air for cleaning the inner surfaces of the integrating spheres. The inner surface is made from specially sintered PTFE which provides its particular roughness and the diffusive reflection properties. Buy cleaning the surface with any solvents it is possible that the roughness get damaged hence the properties of the reflection change. If your application does not require the calibration to be maintained, then other cleaning methods would also work. I will contact you directly to discuss a solution for your application in detail.
user  (posted 2013-05-03 15:47:14.22)
An integrating sphere as the IS200 or the IS200-4 with 2 detector ports would be useful for applications where different dectors are required. Im my case, I need the same detector, but with different filters in front of it. Removing the dector and changing the filter is not convenient... Others applications where an infrared and visible detector could be used at the same time are also possible.
tschalk  (posted 2013-05-06 11:12:00.0)
This is a response from Thomas at Thorlabs. Thank you very much for your feedback. It is a very good idea to have one more port for an additional detector. I will forward this idea to our development department.
tschalk  (posted 2013-05-08 01:54:00.0)
This is a response from Thomas at Thorlabs. I discussed this idea with our development department and we can offer a special item. It would be great if you can contact us ( to discuss your application and the details for the special.
segreto  (posted 2013-04-02 15:42:27.423)
The SMA Fiber Adapter Plate should be coated with the Reflective Sphere Material.
cdaly  (posted 2013-04-04 10:10:00.0)
Response from Chris at Thorlabs: Thank you for using the web feedback. The fiber adapter, SM05SMA, is used outside of the IS200(-4) as well, which is why it's not covered with PTFE already. We may be able to offer this as a custom and I will contact you directly to speak about this. Since you will need to calibrate the photodiode mounted in the IS200-4, this uncoated area should not affect your measurement.
tschalk  (posted 2012-10-24 12:34:00.0)
Response from Thomas at Thorlabs: Thank you very much for your inquiry. The reflectance of the sphere material is wavelength dependent and about 99% from 350nm to 1500nm. The lose is caused by the reflections inside the sphere. Unfortunately there is nothing you can do against it because this is a physical characteristic of the reflectance material. I will contact you directly to discuss this issue.
a.d.v.dam  (posted 2012-10-24 06:01:24.747)
The intensity of the light entering the sphere is about 10x as much as the light which comes out at the detector port. It seems that we lose 90% of the light inside the sphere, probably absorbed by the white coating. Is this possible? What can we do to actually collect all the light in the sphere? Thanks.
jvigroux  (posted 2012-10-03 08:08:00.0)
A response form Julien at Thorlabs: Thank you for your inquiry! I wll try to answer your question in eth same order: 1. they are in principle compatible. you can either use a self built adapter from SMA to Dsub 9 to connect the IS236A-4 to the PM100D or we can also make a special that will directly come with a Dsub 9 connector 2. The integrating sphere can in principle accomodate the S314C. You will need for this a lens tube adapter from 1/2" to 1". In this case, the active surface of the S314C will be recessed quite far away from the surface of the shpere so that the attenuation will be at least 4 orders of magnitude 3. you can exchange the diode that is mounted in the IS236A-4 against any other 1/2" mounted photodiode. One point that was not discussed is the calibration of the photodiode contained in the IS236A-4. In principle, we can calibrate the system diode+sphere and either deliver a diode with Dsub9 connector where the calibration values will be saved such that they can be read out by the PM100D or use the standard SMA connector and send you a document listing the responsivity values for the different wavelengths. The calibration would be of course only valid for the detector mounted into the sphere.
wesam002  (posted 2012-10-03 06:27:00.0)
hello, we want to buy PM100D+ s314c+ IS236A-4 and we have the following questions 1. are the above items compatible with each other. 2. Can we use the integrating sphere with s314c. 3. how much will it cost to add InGaAs sensor to IS236A-4 along with Si sensor included and the possibility of replacing the sensors when we wish. thanks
jvigroux  (posted 2012-09-06 12:44:00.0)
A response from Julien at Thorlabs: Thank you for your inquiry. We can offer additional port plugs for the integrating sphere. We will send oy a quote directly. Concerning the coating, we use the Zenith from SphereOptics. Oil is in principle not a problem for the machining of the coating provided the part s properly cleaned afterwards. It should however not be introduced into the sphere since it will modify the reflection properties of the coating.
alexglenday  (posted 2012-09-05 14:45:19.0)
Is it possible to purchase additional port plugs for the integrating spheres (part SM05CP2C on the shipping list)? I would like to modify the plug to make a smaller entrance hole. I assume the white reflective material in the sphere is Zenith (from SphereOptics)? There does not seem to be much information on this material online, does it have similar properties to Spectralon (from Labsphere)? Particularly, is oil contamination a significant issue? Thank you.
julien  (posted 2010-05-28 04:05:29.0)
A response from Julien at Thorlabs: Yes, the damage threshold for the IS236A is also 2kW/cm2 in CW mode. We will add this specification in the data sheet.
bonito  (posted 2010-05-27 09:32:47.0)
I am comparing general purpose integrating spheres (IS200 series) with calibrated integrating spheres used as sensors (S140C series). In specifications of S142C appears 2 damage threshold values: 2 kW/cm2 and 7J/cm2. In specifications of IS236A appears only 7J/cm2 as threshold damage. Can I assume that maximum power density in IS236A is also 2kW/cm2?.
Tyler  (posted 2008-03-19 07:11:41.0)
Response from Tyler at Thorlabs to vlserg: Thank you for pointing out the mistake in our product description. The IS236A-4 integrating sphere has a silicon sensor.
vlserg  (posted 2008-03-19 02:48:32.0)
What detector type is bild-in IS236A-4: Si or Ge?

Integrating Spheres

Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available
IS200 Support Documentation
IS200Ø2" Integrating Sphere, No Sensor, 3 Ports
IS200-4 Support Documentation
IS200-4Ø2" Integrating Sphere, No Sensor, 4 Ports
IS236A Support Documentation
IS236AØ2" Integrating Sphere, Si Sensor, 3 Ports
IS236A-4 Support Documentation
IS236A-4Ø2" Integrating Sphere, Si Sensor, 4 Ports
IS210C Support Documentation
IS210CØ2" Integrating Sphere, InGaAs Sensor, 3 Ports

Integrating Sphere Accessories

These items are included with the integrating spheres above (depending on the ordered module).
They are available separately as replacement items or if you need additional ones.

The SM05CP2C is a cap to close unused ports. SM05FC and SM05SMA are adapters to connect FC or SMA connectorized fiber patchcords to a port, respectively, and the SM05L05 allows any of our SM05PD photodiodes to be mounted to a port.

Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available
SM05CP2C Support Documentation
SM05CP2CCustomer Inspired! End Cap Coated with 1 mm Thick Reflective Sphere Material
SM05FC Support Documentation
SM05FCFC/PC Fiber Adapter Plate with External SM05 (0.535"-40) Threads
SM05SMA Support Documentation
SM05SMASMA Fiber Adapter Plate with External SM05 (0.535"-40) Threads
SM05L05 Support Documentation
SM05L05SM05 Lens Tube, 0.50" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
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