Here is a guide to inform you of the factors to consider before purchasing a fiber optic spectrometer.
When doing experiments that require configuration of a spectrometer, the steps of choosing a fiber optic is often overlooked. Different factors are there to be considered before choosing a fiber optic spectrometer. Some of the considerations involve different parts of the cable. Considering factors relating to the diameter of the core and absorption are tackled afterward in this article. First of all, let us take a look at the working principle of fiber optic cables and the techniques it uses to transfer data from one point to the other.
Fiber Optic – What is it?
As others consider it as a ‘light pipe’ a fiber optic cable can be defined as a physical data transmission medium that carries data packages in the form of light signals from one place to the other. The cables guide light through the core in the inner side which is comprised of a spectrum that conducts internal reflection.
Factors to Consider
What are the factors to consider when selecting a fiber optic cable? Here are some of the considerations that should ring in your mind when you are selecting the best cable to use for transmission.
Diameter of the Core
In a fiber optic cable, all the light to be transmitted is collected in the core. This means that the diameter of the core determines the number of light signals that can be transmitted through the cable at a time. However, the larger the core the more sensitive is the cable to electromagnetic noise which may lead to distortion of the data under the transmission. The pixel height of the detector should be the first consideration. The lenses are used to focus the image on the array along the axis without distorting its contents. This leads to light being directed to the pixel hence increasing the sensitivity of the setup.
This is also one of the important features you are supposed to consider when choosing a fiber optic cable. In case the fiber absorbs the light, it won’t be detected by the spectrometer. In the manufacturing of the cables, OH ions are doped into the glass using plasma torches which softens the bulbs for easy drawing into fibers. Absorption is created by the presence of these ions which in turn interferes with the measurements of the broadband in the affected region.
However, the ultraviolet spectrum also has severe properties of absorption. Solarization, a photochemical effect in the ultraviolet spectrum causes the absorption. The effect worsens over time as the spectrum is exposed to factors below 290nm. Due to such reasons, you are advised to be keen and pay special attention when selecting a fiber optic cable for a special purpose transmission. An extra tip — it is best if you choose the lowest OH when you are operating the NIR spectra. However, if you work in almost UV spectral length, use standard fiber optics which is commonly referred to as UV fiber. When you choose a fiber optic spectrometer put into consideration the factors named above in order to choose the best one for your needs.
The critical role of the spectrometer slit to the performance of the instrument makes it a factor that must be considered when making a purchase, and now with replaceable-slit models, all needs are catered for easily.
Spectroscopy is a highly demanding field of research, and when looking to purchase instruments for different applications, it is essential to have lots of interests in the details. The spectrometer is the hallmark instrument which is a must-have for all applications in the field and purchasing one should be backed with the guarantee of quality. This often involves taking great interests on the brand or manufacturer that released the model and its specifications which must be able to meet and exceed expectations. A focus on the manufacturer is typically to have the confidence of a product that will be able to perform for longer with no limitations arising from its design.
While considering the spectrometer specifications, the slit is one of the determining factors as to the performance to be expected from the instrument. This is primarily because it determines the amount of light that gets into the spectrometer for processing and optical performance. In general, a wider slit increases the amount of light which reaches the optical bench, but this is always at the expense of the optical resolution. The vice versa is also true as a smaller slit decreases the amount of light that it allows through but will always give higher optical resolutions.
It is, therefore, a tough balance to maintain when considering the slit as every scientist always wants a spectrometer that will enable them to have the best results from every application. The problem is that from time to time different applications often require slits of different sizes and resolutions. This has for long necessitated a lot of professionals and organizations to invest in several spectrometers because of one single aspect which is the slit.
Times have however, and now no one ever needs to incur the costs of purchasing several instruments because of the spectrometer slit when there is an all-in-one solution. Avantes has taken the pains of developing a special model which provides users with the freedom to quickly change the slit depending on the current application. For many scientists, this is a dream come true as they get to have the best of both worlds in a single product. The first advantage is the confidence of using a product from a leading manufacturer that is famous for its top-class solutions. There is an equal gain in having ease in switching from one slit to the other without having to invest in another instrument.
The simplicity of replacing the slits is impressive as all it takes is using a screwdriver to remove the current slit and replacing it with another of choice. A slit set comes complete with all the standard slits of 25, 50, 100 and 200 μm which are used in most applications. No recalibration is required when making the changes as the spectrometers are built with high-precision slit positioning. This makes the slit-replaceable option a perfect solution which can be embraced for all spectroscopy solutions.