We have seen several Iradion tubes come in lately. We have recently received more Iradion model 156 lasers. Last month we fully equipped our stations and processes to handle recharging and repairing Iradion lasers. In the process, what we have found are leaks, gas imbalance and no starts. In regards to the hype- it is true that the tube is ceramic. Unfortunately, the mirror holders and mirrors are epoxied onto the ceramic. Adjustments for the mirrors are done through o-rings. This in our eyes, voids the hype of being a contaminant free ceramic tube that will last forever. We hear it is unable to be regassed. This is FALSE. We have successfully regassed several. In fact on the model 156 we often are seeing over 90W after recharge. The lasers do run very stable and appear to be robust. They run cool which is great for the electronics and the beam specifications are very good. To put facts behind the comments, we did both RGA tests to verify the gas imbalance and Helium leak checks to identify leaks in the tubes. Gas imbalance simply makes the laser the same as everyone else’s laser. It will last X amount of time. There is no unlimited lifetime because of the ceramic construction. Our main concern is the leaks in the tubes. Because of the epoxy joining metal to ceramic the Iradion tubes seem to be very temperature/ environmental dependent- i.e. changes in temperature are suspected to cause leaks.
Customers we have spoken to and end users of the machines seem to be under the impression that these tubes cannot be recharged. They most certainly can! And we can do it for roughly 30% of the cost of replacement. Do not discard them.
As shown an Iradion model 156- typically after a recharge this model will produce approx 80-100 watt
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