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Laser Systems Resources

Section Overview:

At one time limited only to the subject matter of science fiction stories, since their invention in the early 1960s, society has become increasingly dependent on lasers, utilizing the tools in a wide variety of instrumentation that ranges from barcode scanners and compact disk players to surgical equipment and interferometers. Indeed, lasers are the most common light source employed for scanning confocal fluorescence microscopy and, therefore, microscopists utilizing this technique should have a solid understanding of these powerful, radiation-emitting devices.

Web Articles

  • Clark-MXR - Based just outside of Ann Arbor Michigan, Clark-MXR is a leader in laser technology. The company is strongly linked to academic research and movements in the industrial market, offering a wide array of state-of-the-art lasers, accessories, and diagnostic tools.
  • Coherent Lasers - Founded in 1966, Coherent is a leading provider of lasers and photonic solutions to companies and research institutions around the world. News, notes, articles, and publications relating to the field are available on their website, as are detailed product descriptions, an eStore, and service information.
  • Edmund Industrial Optics - Edmund Industrial Optics has been supplying an array of optics and optical components, including a large collection of lasers, for over 60 years. The company's website features a particularly informative and well-designed Technical Support Library that includes a glossary, a FAQ on lasers, and numerous useful articles that cover topics such as the fundamentals of lasers and tackling laser visibility.
  • Fundamentals of Photonics: Lasers - This series of educational modules developed by William T. Silfvast for Project STEP provides a wealth of information about lasers. In addition to informative detailed discussions, the site provides objectives, laboratory exercises, a student project, and problem exercises.
  • How Lasers Work - Developed by HowStuffWorks, Inc., this site includes a vast array of background information on topics such as the basics of an atom, the laser/atom connection, types of lasers, and laser classifications. Links to other related articles and websites are also helpful.
  • Laser 2000 - Laser 2000 is a supplier of lasers, optics, and fiber optic equipment based in the United Kingdom. The company's extensive collection of lasers, laser diodes, and related products can be investigated online via their website.
  • Laser Focus World - An online magazine that covers the latest trends in optics, fiber optics, and lasers, visitors to the site can browse current or past issues, or search the issue archives to find articles that address specific topics. Registration is required for access to the archives, but is free of cost.
  • Laser Group at Liverpool - Part of the Department of Engineering, the University of Liverpool's Laser Group is the United Kingdom's largest university based research group in laser materials processing. The group's website includes overviews of some of the latest laser research projects, a schedule of forthcoming laser events, a moderated discussion forum, listings of recent papers written by group members that can be requested by email, and various other resources, such as a brief history of lasers and information regarding laser safety and the different types of lasers.
  • Laser Institute of America - The Laser Institute of America is a professional membership society that offers technical information and networking opportunities to laser users around the world. Their site provides membership details, subscription information for the organization's official journal, details regarding upcoming conferences, and listings of educational and employment prospects, as well as pertinent press releases and news reports. An online bookstore facilitates the purchase of a variety of laser resources.
  • Lasers and Electro Optics Society - Established, in part, to facilitate information exchange, continuing education, and professional growth, the Lasers and Electro Optics Society provides a variety of resources on its website. Membership details, conference announcements, job postings, student opportunities, and access to organization publications are just a few of the many features. Digital archives containing over 22,000 papers and a virtual university are particularly useful.
  • Opotek - Opotek was founded in 1993 by scientists and engineers who recognized the potential of Optical Parametric Oscillator (OPO) technology for providing solutions to numerous applications. An all solid-state tunable source, OPOs offer reliability and ease of operation that cannot be matched by any other laser system. The company's website offers product details and a FAQ.
  • Point Source - Point Source is the developer of a unique fusion of specialty fiber optics and laser technology that enables high tech instrument designers to bend beams of laser radiation. On the company's website visitors can find product and application information, a discussion of laser theory, and listings of upcoming trade shows and events.
  • Sam's Laser FAQ - Perhaps the most extensive collection of laser information on the web, Sam's Laser FAQ is a practical guide that provides a theoretical background of lasers, comprehensive descriptions of the different laser types, details regarding laser equipment and parts, troubleshooting and repair advice, laser safety recommendations, links to other related sites, and even tips on laser construction. A comprehensive table of contents provides direct links to every chapter and section.
  • Spectra-Physics - Founded in 1961 as the first commercial laser company, Spectra-Physics, which has recently become part of the Newport corporate family, is one of the foremost providers of laser technology in the world. Their site features extensive information regarding their products, as well as a highly useful glossary of laser-related terminology and the newsletter Laser Forefront, a monthly update on the state of technologies in the laser industry.
  • Time-Bandwidth - A spin-off of the Ultrafast Laser Physics Group at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Time-Bandwidth Products was established in 1995 to commercialize new developments in ultrafast laser systems. The company specializes in diode-pumped solid-state lasers.

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