Nanosys Inc. of Palo Alto, Calif., has signed an exclusive licensing agreement with the regents of the University of California for semiconductor nanowire-based lasers. The license will enable the company to develop products such as laser-powered biochips and ultrahigh-resolution photolithography. The nanolasers can be tuned to emit radiation from the IR to the deep-UV by changing the diameter or composition of the nanowire. Current semiconductor lasers are made of multilayer thin films and are several microns in size; the nanowire lasers are approximately 1000 times smaller and offer highly localized optical illumination. Nanolasers eventually may compete with blue gallium nitride lasers in terms of brightness, dimensions and ease of manufacturing, according to the company.