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Laser Machining and Practical Metrology Laboratory

The purpose of the laboratory is to train user to a level where they can safely operate the laser systems unsupervised. It will also familiarise the user with a range of optical and interferometric microscopy techniques.


Cambridge, Institute for Manufacturing


Dr Martin Sparkes


21 hrs laboratory training + 14 hrs to measure laser samples on microscope and interferometer and generate reports


Coursework worth 10 credits


Determination of ablation threshold and rate for ultrafast laser machining

  • Familiarisation with the Ultrafast laser and its safe operation
  • Turn on the laser
  • Measure laser power
  • Confirm the position of the laser via visualisation techniques
  • Determine the focal position of the laser
  • Determine the ablation threshold for single pulse ablation
  • Determine the material removal rate as a function of number of pulses

Introduction to the use of optical microscopy and white light interferometers for sample measurement and analysis

After completion of the laboratory the user should be capable of safe operation of the machines, have an understanding of the limitations of each technique, and be able to further look at standards needed for their own specific measuring needs.

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