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Photonics Dictionary

plume

A mixture of ionized gas and metal vapor generated by impingement of the laser beam onto a material being welded or a weld joint. The plume causes absorption and/or scattering of the incident laser beam. In laser surgery, water vapor containing bits of particulate matter that is produced when the laser vaporizes intracellular fluid in tissues. The plume is irritating to the eyes and the lungs and must be evacuated.
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