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Introduction

Vibrations

Processing

SB Transmission

Exposure

Recording

SB Reflection

MB Transmission

MB Reflection

Lighting

Resources

Exposure Calculation Techniques

In the single-beam transmission hologram setup, using a 5 mW helium neon laser with an output power of 5 mW at the aperture, a 40x microscope objective placed 60 inches from the plate holder, and a PFG-01 plate, the exposure time would be 20 seconds. This will give you an emulsion exposure density of 1.0, the optimal density for a bright transmission hologram. The acceptable density range for a bright transmission hologram is 0.8 to 1.2. I actually used the setup in Figure 67 to achieve these results. If your laser output is a bit higher than 5 mW, your exposure would be less than 20 seconds.

If you can afford a handheld power meter , I recommend you get one because of its accuracy. Using a power meter allows you to measure the intensity of a laser beam, diverged or undiverged, directly in watts/cm2-seconds. The meter has a push button which allows you to change the wavelength of the laser light you're measuring. In our case, 632.8 nm (nanometers). The actual setting on the meter would be 633 nm since the meter doesn't give fractions of a wavelength. There is also a slide-into-place filter over the sensor for measuring power levels greater than 10 mW. Power readings are given in watts/cm2-seconds (W), milliwatts/cm2-seconds (mW), and microwatts/cm2-seconds (µW).

Let's look at an example of using this meter in figuring out your exposure time for the single-beam transmission hologram. Set the meter to microwatts, wavelength set at 633 nm, and the filter not covering the sensor. Place the sensor area of the meter at the center of the plate holder facing the incoming diverging reference beam square on, that is, perpendicular to the beam and take a reading. Additionally, take four separate readings at each corner of the plate holder and average all 5 of them by adding them all together and dividing by 5. Let's say the average is 4 µW/cm2-seconds. Because the reference beam is incident on the plate at 56 degrees, you must take the cosine of 56 (0.5592) and multiple this number by 4: 0.5592 x 4 µW/cm2-seconds = 2.24 µW/cm2-seconds. This is the real power level (intensity) of the reference beam at the plate. Now you divide the power sensitivity of the PFG-01 recording plate by the calculated power reading at the plate holder: 80 µW/cm2 ÷ 2.24 µW/cm2-seconds = 35.7 seconds. Your exposure time will be 36 seconds because you should always round up.

If you don't want to spend the money on a power meter, you can use a volt-ohm-meter (VOM) connected to a small solar cell to measure the light level at the plate holder in volts and use this measurement to indirectly calculate the exposure time. If the solar cell is encased and has a plastic cover, remove the cover. You don't want the cover reflecting any of the incident reference beam.

You will not be using this exposure calculation technique at this time. It's presented here so you can become familiar with the technique and refer back to it during your actual recording. Here, I'll be telling you to make an exposure and to process the plate, but I'm actually referring to what you'll be doing in the next sub-section on Recording and Processing. You will not be making the real exposure and processing at this time.

VOM with solar cell image
                   Figure 73: VOM meter and solar cell connected.

You're now going to measure the density of the dried hologram. With the room lights on, place the VOM on a table top with the solar cell attached and place the solar cell face up on the table top so the room lights illuminate the solar cell. Do not block the room lights with your body. Take a reading in volts of the ambient room light as shown in Figure 73. We'll call this Intensity One (I1). Write the voltage down on paper.

Next, place the dried, unbleached, exposed plate on top of the solar cell with the emulsion facing up (the emulsion side of the plate is less reflective than the glass side). Take a second voltage reading as shown in Figure 74. We'll call this Intensity Two (I2). Write this voltage down on paper. If you've used film instead of a plate, place the film down on the cell with the emulsion up and hold the film's four corners down using four of your gloved fingers to keep the film as flat as possible. Make sure you are not casting any shadows on the film. If you were to use a clear glass plate to keep the film flat, the glass would reflect some of the room light and give you an inaccurate reading.

VOM/solar cell with plate image
                  Figure 74: Meter and solar cell with plate on top.

Now divide the first voltage I1 by the second voltage I2. The resulting number is a ratio and does not have units. Using a Common Logarithms of Numbers table, look up this number and the corresponding log of that number is given and is your plate density. The equation is:

Density calculation equation image

As an example, if I1 is 24 volts and I2 is 3 volts, then I1 divided by I2 is 8. The log of 8 is 0.9. This puts you within the density range of a properly exposed transmission hologram of 0.8 to 1.2.

If you get a voltage reading of greater than 9.91 (which is the largest voltage number in the log table), you need to do some simple arithmetic to achieve the proper density reading. For example, if your dividend between I1 and I2 is 11 volts, find the log number for 9.91 volts and write it down (.9961). Next, subtract 9.91 from 11 giving you 1.09. Look up 1.09 as your voltage reading in the table and you will get approximately .0453. Add .9961 and .0453 and you get 1.0414. You're within the density range of 0.8 and 1.2.

If your density is below this range, you need to increase your exposure time. If the density is above the range, you need to decrease your exposure. If your first exposure didn't fall within the range, keep making different exposure times until you've achieve a density within the range. Keep everything constant and only change the exposure time. Once you've achieved an exposure density within the acceptable range, you can use the original voltage measured at the plate holder as a reference for future setups and measurements with the VOM and solar cell at the plate holder. You now have a correct exposure time related to your voltage measurement of the reference beam.

For example, if your original measurement at the plate holder was 6 volts and your exposure time was 20 seconds and you achieved a plate density of 1.0, then a voltage reading of 6 volts at the plate holder of your next setup will give you a density of 1.0 for a 20 second exposure. If your voltage reading at the plate holder is 3 volts in a new setup, then your exposure time should double to 40 seconds. The relationship between the voltage reading and the exposure time is linear. I've included the Common Logarithms of Numbers table for your convenience.

You may have noticed that you did not take the cosine of 56 degrees and multiply that number by your voltage reading of the reference beam with the solar cell facing the beam directly. I have experimentally found that the difference in the voltage readings of the reference beam between the plate holder being at 56 degrees and the plate holder being at 0 (zero) degrees is only 5%. You can compensate for this small difference with your exposure time if needed (5% of 20 second exposure is 1.0 second). With a power meter, having high accuracy since the sensor is specially made for your laser beam, you do have to take the cosine of 56 degrees of your power meter reading of the reference beam to get an accurate power reading in watts for making your exposure time calculations. You will have to use the cosine of 56 degrees of your solar cell reading of the reference beam when comparing the beam intensity ratios between the reference beam and reflected object scene light at the plate. But not with this single-beam transmission setup.

Note: You may want to do all your exposure testing with film instead of plates since film is cheaper. You will need to get two 4 inch x 5 inch glass plates for sandwiching the film. Your 56 degree reference beam angle will allow all of the reference beam's energy to pass through both glass plates. I've found that sometimes the size of the 4 inch x 5 inch film can be slightly larger than the size of the 4 inch x 5 inch sandwiching plates. You can find out if this is true by sandwiching the film (under safelight conditions) and feel the edges of the two plates to see if you can also feel the edge of the film on two sides. If you do feel the film, you need to cut off about 1/16 inch of film on one 4 inch side and the same for one 5 inch side. A rolling cutting board works great for this (do not use a chopping cutting board since it tends to grab and pull the film below the cutting board). New sharp scissors work well also. If you let the film extend beyond the glass plates, the film could get squeezed when placed in the plate holder, causing unwanted wrinkles in the film which will distort your image.