Skip to Content
laser light©️ Private
AOM v EOM whitepaper diagram©️ Private

What’s the best way to modulate my laser beam – AOM or EOM?

Understand the basic operating principles of the two most common laser beam modulators: acousto-optic modulators (AOMs) and electro-optic modulators (EOMs).

Laser Beam Modulators: acousto-optic modulators v electro-optic modulators

There is a tremendous variety in the laser beam modulators commercially available today. Choosing the right one, in terms of performance, cost, and reliability, can be daunting, especially for those not familiar with the technologies.

In this whitepaper, receive clear guidance on how to understand product specifications and learn to identify the products that suit your specific needs.

If you have ever wondered what laser modulators are, what is the difference between EOMs and AOMs or how to choose between them, then download this free guide.

WHITEPAPER: What’s the best way to modulate my laser beam – AOM or EOM?
©️ An example of an AO modulator and a Pockels cell (EO modulator).

AOMs v EOMs: choosing a laser modulator

Since the AOM is generally lower cost than the EOM, this is often a core consideration unless the application has a critical need for one of the key advantages of the EOM.

Compared to the AOM, the EOM offers a larger aperture, high power and pulse energy compatibility, very high contrast ratio and fast rise time.

Conversely, the AOM offers much higher modulation speeds.

This whitepaper will explain the key differences between acousto-optic modulators and electro-optic modulators in detail, including insertion loss/transmission efficiency, contrast ratio/extinction and power, energy handling/damage threshold.

Plus, there is a handy guide to the typical applications of both types of laser modulators. Explore uses cases for EOM Q-switching in military lasers, high-energy lasers and Alexandrite lasers for medical applications. Discover how AOMs are used in materials processing systems, pulse picking in ultrafast laser systems and as fast deflectors in confocal microscopy.

WHITEPAPER: What’s the best way to modulate my laser beam – AOM or EOM?

Customised photonics and optical solutions

We provide a wide variety of standard products to customers where required, but our true passion and capability lies with customized photonics components and optical systems