How many mW does a laser have to be to burn things?

I’m not talking about high power industrial lasers, just those little hand held lasers that can pop balloons & light matches and smoke clothing. This is for educational purposes. Please & thank you.

P.S. I just had a thought what would happen if you reflect a burning laser on a mirror… :P

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One Response to How many mW does a laser have to be to burn things?

  1. dan k says:

    I believe not for sure. It starts burning matches at around 90 mW and dark balloons at 75mW. Not for sure though.