By Daniel Cote
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ABCD Gaussian Beam Propagation is an application that calculates the various properties of a laser beam propagating through simple optical elements. It displays the beam and the optical setup in a graphical window that can be manipulated by the user. A table shows the values at all points, they can be copied and used in plotting applications.
•User-defined inputs (wavelength, radius of curvature, size) and M-square (i.e. multimode equivalence)
• Calculate propagation through free space, dielectrics, lenses and mirrors. Use toolbars to add elements.
• Calculate eigenmodes of a laser resonator
• Obtain the beam size, radius of curvature, waist size, waist position, and Rayleigh range at any point.
• Copy and paste values (radius, beam size) into your own plotting program
• Copy the physical appearance of the setup as a PDF
• All calculations are performed using the ray matrix formalism (i.e. ABCD matrices) and therefore make the paraxial approximation.
What's New in Version 4.1
• Now works on 10.6.x and 10.7.x
• Printing, in the form of a detailed calculation summary
• New optical elements: gaussian ducts
• Significant performance improvements, especially for large setups with many elements
• User can choose calculations performed before or after optical elements
• When drag-positioning elements, if multiple elements are selected, they move together.
• Preferences for laser color, default property values, number of sampling points for graphs
• Slightly modified file format, automatically converted from prior version
Used to work, not so much anymore
This used to be a great little program. The functionality is extremely simple, but it was a really nice way to do quick ABCD calculations. It is pretty much completely broken and useless with the newest version. The user interface is buggy: doesn’t register the double-clicks necessary to edit element properties, and often gets stuck in an unresponsive state. It used to be really straight forward to setup an optical configuration, now everything has to be specified in absolute coordinates, which is cumbersome and also seems buggy. I just purchased this and I might as well have flushed $30 down the toilet.