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I have a pulsed 30Hz 532nm laser for which I would like 29 pulses to follow one optical path but for 1 pulse per second to be diverted onto a different path. I thought I could simply google for a mirrored chopper wheel but nothing appears to come up.

Does such a thing exist? Or should I be doing something different to divert the beam?

EDIT: The primary purpose of the setup is to implement an underwater LIDAR system with the 29 pulses illuminating a small area using a Powell lens whilst the final pulse will be used to generate a wide-angle image of the seafloor and needs to pass through something such as a diffuser.

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  • $\begingroup$ Such a thing is certainly physically possible. But whether (and where) you can buy one is a question about shopping, not physics. Try looking on the websites of optical instrument manufacturers, or emailing their sales departments. ... Asking how you can achieve a certain goal is a valid question about experimental physics. $\endgroup$ Dec 22, 2016 at 16:28
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    $\begingroup$ Perhaps you could explain more about why you wish to divert 1 pulse in 30, and what you are going to do with the 1 pulse. That would help in making suitable suggestions. $\endgroup$ Dec 22, 2016 at 16:35
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    $\begingroup$ One might think that a galvo-mirror would work just fine, although pointing stability might be an issue (and would be an issue with a mirrored optical chopper as well). $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    Dec 22, 2016 at 17:53

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What about a Pockels cell and a beam-splitting polarizer?

Assuming your laser is linearly polarized, the former can control the polarization axis pulse-by-pulse, while the latter reflects the beam or not, depending on it polarization.

The efficiency may not be perfect depending on the optics quality and the electronics behind the Pockels cell, but that's a question of design.

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A company called EOPC - ELECTRO-OPTICAL PRODUCTS CORPORATION offers something like this according to their homepage.

https://www.eopc.com/c995.html.imhbak.2010-02-02 From the Webpage: "to 5 kHz, ...reflective blades optional."

Also NIST is using such choppers, but I don't know where they obtain them. Article published in 2008 in the Journal of Research of the National Institute of Standards and Technology "Reflective Optical Chopper Used in NIST High-Power Laser Measurements"

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