Researchers make ultra-low-cost, easy to fabricate ‘lasing capsules’ with an inkjet printer
Since lasers were invented more than 50 years ago, they have transformed a diverse swath of technology — from CD players to surgical instruments.
Now researchers from France and Hungary have invented a way to print lasers that’s so cheap, easy and efficient they believe the core of the laser could be disposed of after each use. The team reports its findings in the Journal of Applied Physics, from AIP Publishing.
“The low-cost and easiness of laser chip fabrication are the most significant aspects of our results,” said Sébastien Sanaur, an associate professor in the Center of Microelectronics in Provence at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines de Saint-Étienne in France.
Sanaur and his colleagues made organic lasers, which amplify light with carbon-containing materials. Organic lasers are not as common as inorganic lasers, like those found in laser pointers, DVD players, and optical mice, but they offer benefits such as high-yield photonic conversion, easy fabrication, low-cost and a wide range of wavelengths.
One obstacle that has held back organic lasers is the fact that they degrade relatively quickly — but that hurdle might be less daunting if the lasers are so cheap they could be tossed when they fail.
Sanaur’s research team produced their ultra-low-cost organic laser using a familiar technology: an inkjet printer.
Inkjet printing is a relatively inexpensive manufacturing process that works by squirting small jets of fluid onto an underlying material. The inkjet printer at your office is only one form of the technology — scientists have also adapted it to print electronic circuits, pharmaceutical drugs and even biological cells.
“By piezoelectric inkjet printing, you print ‘where you want, when you want,’ without wasting raw materials,” Sanaur said. The technique doesn’t require masks, can be done at room temperature and can print onto flexible materials.
The researchers tested a variety of possible inks, before settling on a commercial ink variety called EMD6415, which they mixed with dyes. The ink was printed in small square shapes onto a quartz slide.
The dyed ink acted as the core of the laser, called a gain medium. A gain medium amplifies light and produces the characteristically narrow, single-color laser beam.
A laser also requires mirrors to reflect light back and forth through the gain medium and an energy source, called a pump, to keep the light amplification going.
The disposable part of the new laser is the printed gain medium, which the researchers call the “lasing capsule.” They estimate it could be produced for only a few cents. Like the replaceable blades in a razor, the lasing capsule could be easily swapped out when it deteriorates.
The research team used two different types of dyes to produce laser emission ranging from yellow to deep red. Other dyes could cover the blue and green part of the spectrum, they predict.
With further development, the inexpensive inkjet-printed laser could send data over short plastic fibers and serve as a tool for analysing chemical or biological samples.
Learn more: Introducing the disposable laser
The Latest on: Disposable laser
via Google News
The Latest on: Disposable laser
- Desktop Printers Market 2020 | Demand, Growth Opportunities and Top Key Players 2027on March 1, 2021 at 9:03 am
Desktop printers are pieces of hardware which include laser printers, Inkjet printers and Dot matrix printers which ...
- Rocket launches reveal water vapor effect in upper atmosphereon March 1, 2021 at 7:06 am
Results of a 2018 multirocket launch will help scientists better understand the impact of more water vapor accumulating near the fringe of the Earth's atmosphere.
- How photoblueing disturbs microscopyon February 28, 2021 at 11:16 pm
The latest developments in fluorescence microscopy make it possible to image individual molecules in cells or molecular complexes with a spatial resolution of up to 20 nanometres. However, under ...
- Light unbound: Data limits could vanish with new optical antennason February 25, 2021 at 8:03 am
Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have found a new way to harness properties of light waves that can radically increase the amount of data they carry. The new work throws wide ...
- Surgical Laser Market Size Rising at 5.5% CAGR During 2020-2027: Analysis of Key Players, Trends and Driverson February 25, 2021 at 4:42 am
Selbyville, Delaware, As cited by the business intelligence report titled 'Global Surgical Laser Market Size study, by Type, by Application (Ophthalmology, Dermatology, Dentistry, Urology, Cardiology, ...
- Best laser printer: For the home or for your officeon February 24, 2021 at 11:59 am
Searching for the best printers for your home? Selecting the best laser printer for you can be a bit complicated. There is a series of factors, costs, and features that you’ll want to take into ...
- Dead in the Water: Lasers Could Make Short Work of Naval Mineson February 24, 2021 at 11:18 am
Some so-called “bottom mines” can be buried or shallow-water mines easily triggered by surface ships or submarines. Moored mines, however, often tethered to the ocean floor, can be found in deeper ...
- A U.S. strategy paper on China draws a tepid response in Beijingon February 23, 2021 at 10:12 pm
"The Longer Telegram" and its call for stringent U.S. policy on China caught the attention of many in Washington, but only a passing public response in Beijing.
- At $8,995, Is This 1986 Chrysler Laser XT Turbo A Truly Coherent Deal?on February 22, 2021 at 6:51 am
The Laser, and its Dodge Daytona clone ... The dashboard features cool ’80s graph paper backgrounds on all the dials, along with a futuristic digital readout for the clock and date.
- Fully ablative CO2 laser treatment: What is it and can it get rid of acne scarring and wrinkles?on February 19, 2021 at 6:03 am
First, there was the decade of cystic acne in my 20s, then followed the eternal quest to rid myself of the scarring that ensued. I thought I’d be content once the acne had cleared (it mysteriously ...
via Bing News