Open arrangement on the occasion of the 50-years anniversary of the laser at the start of the ICPEPA 7 conference. – Niels Bohr Institute - University of Copenhagen

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Open arrangement on the occasion of the 50-years anniversary of the laser at the start of the ICPEPA 7 conference.

The 50-years anniversary of the laser will be celebrated at an open meeting at the beginning of the international conference, ICPEPA 7 (International Conference on Photo-Excited Processes and Applications) in the Lundbeck Auditorium at the Biocenter of University of Copenhagen. The group of Theodore Maiman at Hughes Research Laboratories, California turned the first laser 50 years ago. The anniversary is actually celebrated at several international conferences outside Denmark as well.


The laser (Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation) was considered as a scientific artifact at the discovery. Nobody expected the device to be known outside a small scientific community. However, today lasers are used everywhere in our society in our fast communication by optical fibers, as hardware parts in laser printers, DVD-drives and optical scanners in shops. They are also used for machining and welding of huge objects as ships in yards as well as for micromachining of small mechanical parts.

In Physics the lasers has provided the researchers with a precise well-characterized light source which can produce ultra short pulses of extreme power and intensity, but also continuous beams of well-defined wavelengths. The high intensity can be utilized for production of new materials, e.g. in Solid Oxide Fuel Cells with a very complicated chemical composition, and to fast mass analysis of organic materials. In the last decades laser cooling was used to produce a new state of matter, the so-called Bose-Einstein condensate that has revolutionized our concepts in quantum mechanics.

The conference ICPEPA is focusing on photo-excitations and the possible applications. It is a minor conference with about 120 participants, but it was only possible to get it to Denmark with coordinated effort headed by Senior Scientist at DTU Fotonik from four different laser groups in Denmark from the major Physics universities in Denmark, University of Copenhagen with Niels Bohr Institute, DTU Fotonik at the Technical University of Denmark, Institute of Physics and Astronomy, and Mads Clausen Institute at University of Southern Denmark. The conference has participants from 27 countries with Denmark, Germany and the East Asian states (Japan, Rep. Korea, and Taiwan) as the largest contributors.

Since most of the participants are younger than the laser - and many young physicist cannot imagine a project without a laser - the local committee has therefore planned to use the opportunity to ask one of the veterans of laser science, prof. Sune Svanberg to give a talk: "The laser- the first 50 years" and this session will be a public session as an open arrangement.

It is striking that a scientific discovery which initially was considered to be without any significance - 50 years after - has driven industrial enterprises to turnovers of billions of Euros and physics to extreme limits with the upcoming major European Facility XFEL (X-ray Free Electron Laser) in Hamburg as a milestone.

Address:
Lundbeck Auditoriet, Biocentret, Ole Maaløes vej 5, 2200 N.
Tidspunkt: Mandag den 16. august, kl. 9:00 - 10:15
More information: Jørgen Schou, Tlf. 46 77 47 55 (josc@fotonik.dtu.dk) eller
Martin Meedom Nielsen, Tlf. 35 32 04 27 (martin.meedom.nielsen@nbi.ku.dk).