SANTA CLARA, Calif., May 7, 2012 — Spectra-Physics, a Newport Corp. brand, has launched the alphaScan, a compact, integrated optical parametric oscillator (OPO) and pump laser that outputs high energies in the near-infrared for photoacoustic imaging. With a rapid-scan option, the system can switch wavelengths in alternating laser pulses for differential measurements, enabling enhanced imaging and signal quality. The system is software controlled and fully automated for simple operation in biological imaging and spectroscopy applications. Its high energies, flexible tunability and ease of use make it suitable for tumor detection and for imaging the structure of live tissues in cancer research. Photoacoustic imaging is an emerging technique for imaging live tissue at depths up to 10 cm. The laser light locally excites acoustic waves in the live tissue for high-resolution spectroscopic imaging at great depths. The alphaScan delivers >50 mJ of pulse energy in the near-infrared, useful for biological applications using the hemoglobin absorption region. The rapid-scan option allows the system to tune up to 100 nm between alternating pulses for simultaneous detection of two distinct markers or differential absorption measurement of two wavelengths. The system integrates a proprietary Quanta-Ray laser and the green-pumped Scan Series OPO into a single device.