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Europe approves powerful research lasers

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only
by Staff Writers
Brussels (UPI) Apr 25, 2011
The European Commission says it has approved plans to build new lasers that will dwarf the power of existing lasers for research into particle physics.

Three new lasers, each costing about $400 million, will be constructed -- one in the Czech Republic, one in Hungary and one in Romania, reported Monday.

The lasers, set for completion in 2015, will be capable of firing pulses that reach a power of 10 petawatts.

Each of the lasers will be different in its design details, allowing each to perform different high-energy physics experiments, including accelerating particles using the laser pulses, studying atomic nuclei, and generating fleeting pulses to study the dynamics of extremely fast events in atoms.

The project, called the Extreme Light Infrastructure, will pave the way for an even more powerful laser capable of generating 10 beams, each twice as powerful as any one of the three ELI lasers, researchers said.

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Better Lasers For Optical Communications
Lausanne, Switzerland (SPX) Apr 14, 2011
Long-distance, high speed communications depend on lasers. But when information is transmitted down fiber optic cables, it's critical that the signal be clear enough to be decoded at the other end. Two factors are important in this respect: the color of the light, otherwise known as the wavelength, and the orientation of the light wave, known as polarization. A team from EPFL and the Swiss ... read more

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