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Beam Splitter (BS) is a term used to describe various coatings which divide a beam of light into separate beams. Dichroic filters are often called beam splitters as they reflect the undesired wavelengths and pass all other light. In this section, we will be describing beam splitters that divide light at each wavelength of interest into two separate beams. These beam splitters are typically designed for an incident angle around 45 degrees from normal.
Partially transmitting metals also make very useful beam splitter coatings. Two common metals used for this purpose are Inconel and chrome. Metal beam splitters are often very broad and can cover a much wider spectrum of wavelengths than their dielectric counterparts.
Dielectric coatings as described here have the advantage of being non-absorbing and so allow for greater throughput of energy. These dichroic filters for example, have a dielectric coating that can be used for a 50/50 beam splitter. In contrast, Inconel is limited to 30% transmission and 30% reflection due to the absorption inherent in the metal film. Standard dielectric beam splitter coatings include 30/70, 50/50, and 70/30. We welcome inquiries regarding any custom requirements you may have.