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Laser class and safety

Class 1

Lasers in class 1 class are harmless even with long exposure (100 seconds). Either the lasers are so weak that they can not give any risk of injury no matter how you behave, or they are devices that contain lasers – which in themselves can be of a higher class – but are built-in and interlocked so that no dangerous radiation comes out.

Class 1M (magnifier)

Lasers whose total power or pulse energy exceeds what is allowed in class 1 (applies to UV, visible and IR), but where the beam is not narrow but widespread. In this way, the exposure limit values for an unarmed eye cannot be exceeded. If you collect the beam e.g. with optics, however, the safety can not be guaranteed.

Class 2

Class 2 only includes visible light (wavelength between 400-700nm). 100mm from the focus of the radiation source, a power of less than 1mW shall emerge through a 50mm small hole. This requires non-pulsed laser.

The reason for this limit is that it is considered that the blink reflex reacts in about 0.25 seconds. During this time, the eye can easily look at a laser dot with a power of less than 1mW.

Class 2M (magnifier)

Class 2M only includes visible light (wavelength between 400-700nm). Class 2 M corresponds to Class 2 but is a scattered laser, for example a line laser. With the help of optics, you can make it stronger. 100mm from the focus of the radiation source, a power of less than 1mW shall emerge through a 7mm small hole. This requires non-pulsed laser.

7mm is the size of the pupil and is the reason why the limit is set to 7mm.

Class 3R (restricted)

Class 3R is divided into two parts; one for visible light and one for invisible light (for example UV and IR). Visible light (wavelength between 400-700nm): Class 3R includes lasers that are stronger than 1mW but weaker than 5mW. Invisible light: More power than Class 1 but less 5 x the class limit for Class 1.

Class 3B

Class 3B is divided into two parts; one for visible light and one for invisible light (for example UV and IR). Visible light (wavelength between 400-700nm): Class 3B includes lasers that are stronger than 5mW but weaker than 500mW. Invisible light: More power than 5 x the class limit for Class 1 but weaker than 500mW.

Class 4

Class 4 are lasers that are stronger than 500mW.

Lasers of this class are always dangerous to eyes and skin. Warning! It can also be dangerous to look at an illuminated spot on a matte surface without protection!