An ultra-fast tiny laser can work as a miniature scalpel inside the body, making careful incisions or excisions while leaving healthy tissue intact. It is more effective than a doctor’s metal scalpel or even other laser devices, according to its developers at the University of Texas, because it leaves more healthy cells alone.
Hearing loss from weapons and explosive devices has been the No. 1 disability in this country’s modern military conflicts, saddling thousands of veterans with anything from tinnitus to deafness. Now a new generation of laser-based implants promises to restore their hearing — and that of civilians, too — with higher resolution than existing technology.
Laser light can not only trigger lightning but redirect it, causing it to strike in the same place over and over, according to new research. This means lasers could serve as lightning rods. Because that would be awesome.
Lasers are getting smaller and more powerful — earlier this month, we saw the first-ever atomic scale laser, and now researchers are reporting the smallest telecommunications-frequency laser ever built. The laser is one-fifteenth the size of the light waves it can produce, and it works at room temperature.
In two separate studies, the world’s most powerful X-ray laser has been used to build the first atomic X-ray laser pulse, as well as to superheat and control a clump of 2-million-degree matter. The atomic laser could be used to watch biological molecules at work, while the creation of hot dense matter could be used to understand the processes of nuclear fusion.
There's always been a lot to love about a pico projector. A palm-sized device that can port video from anything from a laptop to an iPod onto a large projected screen? Sign me up. Until now, though, picos only came is two forms: as a standalone box, or strapped onto the back of a device like a smartphone, rendering the gadget bulky and extremely power inefficient. Enter MicroVision's PicoP Gen2 projector, debuting this week. The PicoP Gen2 is among the smallest pico system we've seen, and it's incredibly power efficient--perfect for embeds in multi-function devices.
By Becky FerreiraPosted 12.26.2011 at 3:00 pm 13 Comments
By day, Seok-Hyun Yun and Malte Gather are physicists at Massachusetts General Hospital. But at night, for the past four years, they worked on making a human cell behave like a laser. They built their human laser out of the same three components found in all lasers: a pump source, which provides the initial light energy; an optical cavity, which concentrates the light from the pump source into a beam; and a gain medium, a substance in which electrons are excited until they reach a higher-energy state and simultaneously release that energy as a beam of photons—laser light.
Deep in an underground bunker near the German-Czech border, through a 65-foot tunnel and locked behind five cold storage doors, German scientists are building a laser so advanced, so precise, that there isn’t another laser in the world that can challenge it. But despite the sinister-sounding backdrop, there’s nothing nefarious going on here. Researchers there have built the world’s most stable ring laser, and they’re using it to make unprecedentedly accurate measurements of the Earth’s rotation.
In a potential breakthrough for cryptography, a new laser light-scattering technique could be a fast and efficient way to generate truly random numbers, creating unknowable code formulas that will be able to thwart even the most sophisticated hackers. Led by Canadian researchers, the new method relies on the bizarre characteristics of quantum uncertainty.
It is much easier to get to Mars than to get deep inside this planet, so for all our knowledge about things like earthquakes and the magnetic field, Earth's interior is actually very poorly understood. To study how metals interact at the prodigious pressures within, scientists squeeze small particles in the lab and heat them up — but this is an inexact science and difficult to do.