Lasers and optical components, which encompass the many instruments and
accessories needed to harness the power of light, are found in almost
every scientific industry, in areas such as:
- Biological research
- Molecular diagnostics
- Particle analysis
- And more!
Unique properties of laser light include its ability to propagate over
long lengths without divergence and its very narrow optical bandwidth.
There are three primary components: an optical resonator comprising two
or more mirrors, a gain medium to amplify the light, and an energy
source or pump to excite the particles in the gain medium.
How do I choose a laser or optical component?
There is a laser suited for every application, including
- Solid-state varieties, such as Nd:YAG and Ti:Sapphire
- Gas lasers, including helium-neon (common in
- CO2 and N2 lasers, dye lasers, and semiconductor
lasers, or laser diodes.
Wavelength (UV, NIR, FIR); beam diameter, intensity, and divergence;
and output power are important parameters to keep an eye on. The laser
light can be emitted continuously or in pulses down to femtosecond
duration, a type commonly used in photochemistry. Optics such as
beamsplitters and mirrors are optimized for use with each type of
Lasers are very useful sources in spectroscopy, such as Raman, in any
operating range from the UV to the NIR. High power densities enable
laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS), a compelling technique for
a wide range of sample matrices.
Laser illumination has also taken optical microscopy to new levels of
resolution; techniques include confocal laser scanning, two-photon
excitation microscopy, and optical coherence tomography.
Accessories to facilitate this work include optical benches, filter wheels
, and stages
Advances in micromanipulation systems
nanopositioners, optical tweezers, and piezo scanners continue to push
this technology forward.
What’s new in lasers and optical components?
Through the integration of single-photon detectors with nanophotonic
chips, reliable detection of single photons for optical data
transmission and quantum computations has been achieved—a leap that may
further advance the noninvasive study of insulin-producing pancreatic
Also noteworthy are the introduction of an aberration-free imaging
spectrograph, the availability of portable, lower-cost Raman
spectrophotometers, and a multipurpose instrument with the ability to
analyze the Raman spectra of microscopic samples in addition to UV-VIS
-NIR and fluorescence microspectroscopy.
Discover and lasers and optical components:
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Piezo Technology for Microscopy, Life Sciences, and Metrology
Monday, December 15, 2014
Optical Surfaces Ltd. has been selected by Beijing Metstar Radar Co., Ltd. (Beijing, China) to supply a high-precision beam expander that will form a key component in its next-generation fiber-based pulse Doppler Wind Lidar system. read more
Monday, December 15, 2014
Designed for use with line scan and area scan cameras, Large Format Lenses from Resolve Optics Ltd. provide the very high resolution over a large image format required by the most demanding scientific and machine vision applications. read more
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Optical Surfaces Ltd. is a leading international supplier of concave and convex spherical mirrors made to your exact specification. read more
Morgan Advanced Materials (Morgan) announces the availability of PZT (lead zirconate titanate) components, and assemblies at its Bedford, Ohio facility. read more
Wednesday, September 03, 2014
Specialised Imaging, working in conjunction with Cavitar, announces the SI LUX640 laser illumination system - a new innovation to improve the accuracy and sensitivity of high-speed video, ultra high-speed framing camera, Schleiren imaging and Shadowgraph systems. read more