How often should I recalibrate my laser power or energy detector?

Now that you got your hands on a brand-new Gentec-EO laser power or laser energy detector, you may be wondering when will you have to let go this awesome piece of technology for recalibration. Or maybe it’s the dusty detector that you found in a colleague's drawer and you are wondering if the calibration is still valid.

Recommended calibration interval

First, you need to understand that there is no mandatory recalibration period. There is no international standard related to this and you can decide what your calibration interval will be. However, the industry standard is that a detector should be recalibrated every 12 months, and that the calibration on new units is valid for 18 months. 

Gentec-EO calibrates all detectors using the highest industry standard to ensure we provide our customers with the best accuracy possible. There are many advantages to recalibrate your detectors regularly. You can learn more on this topic here.

If you are working in an industry such as the medical laser industry, calibration validity is critical for the success of your operation and a detector head should be sent back for recalibration once every 12 months.

This recommended period could be less (for example 9 months or even 6 months) if you are working in the service field or it could be longer (18 months or even 24 months) if the detector is in a stable environment with minimal manipulations.

In general, you can follow the industry standard and consider that the initial calibration validity is 18 months from the first day you put the detector under a laser. Take a note of this date on its calibration certificate. It will act as a birth certificate. After these 18 months we recommend that calibration be performed once every 12 months. 

How can I check if my detector needs to be recalibrated?

Laser power meters and energy meters can drift over time, one way to track this is to keep a reference unit with a fresh calibration (inside 12 months last calibration date) and compare it every 3 months to your other units, to make sure there’s no drift in measurement. This can help to space out the recalibration period for units that didn’t drift.

Can I still measure with a unit that doesn't have a fresh calibration?

The answer is yes, it will give you a measurement, but you won’t be able to tell with accuracy what is the actual output.

If you have any questions on this topic of if you would like to send a unit back for recalibration, please send your inquiry.


Gentec-EO
Gentec Electro-Optics is specialized in laser beam and terahertz source measurement and analysis. With an outstanding 45-year track record of innovation, developing and providing state-of the-art technologies to the laser market, Gentec-EO has become The Expert of the laser beam measurement field. For all sorts of laser applications from the factory to the hospital, laboratory and research center, Gentec-EO offers the broadest range of off-the-shelf and custom solutions, and stands ready to serve you now and in the future.
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