The conception of laser technology (more specifically, light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation: LASER) dates back to the 1960s. A basic classification for lasers as compared to any other type of light comes from its irradiance and highly-concentrated powers. When the concept of lasers was first being defined, its uses and promises seemed high, but we’ve gone so far in a mere half-century that it’s worth taking note of the litany of ways in which we use lasers in daily modern life.
This could be a long list. In lasers, we’ve discovered an invaluable tool that has uses in everything from medicine to communication. No doubt, the world would be a rather different place without them. Some of the ways in which they are used may surprise those without technical knowledge of these luminous beams. Here are just a few of the unique utilizations of lasers:
The world’s fastest camera could only be powered by laser technology. The STEAM (Short-Time-Encoded Amplified Microscopy) is a breath-taking piece of technology that can take approximately 6.1 million pictures a second. It was created by University of California scientists. The camera takes so many images by using an intricate system of infrared lasers and will be used to capture images of sub-atomic particles.
- Air Force Technology
From laser guided missiles to lasers used as missiles themselves, the military’s uses for lasers are widespread and sometimes worthy of science fiction. Lasers themselves have widespread uses in avionics that go well beyond defense capabilities.
- Laser Movies
In South Hampton, England, a ground-breaking technology that is Europe’s first “all-laser” movie theater was constructed. The machines are said to provide superior picture as well as 3D imaging. At a reported cost of around 105 million U.S. dollars, those are some top-level movie projectors.
- Super Science
Some of the most fascinating uses of lasers, and often the least heralded, are the contributions they make in assisting the scientific community. Massive, multinational projects such as CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (the world’s fastest particle accelerator that allowed us to confirm the existence of black holes) and LIGO (a hyper-complex device that recently made the detection of theorized gravity waves) were made possible with the use of exceptionally fine-tuned lasers. Lasers have only recently found the level of calibration necessary to make these discoveries.
The world of laser technology is bound to continue to grow. For information on Gooch & Housego or our products, such as spectroradiometers, contact us anytime at 407-422-3171.