Compact brilliant laser light source developed
BERLIN – Scientists
from Ferdinand-Braun-Institut have developed small, brilliant laser light sources
that provide significantly smaller systems for laser projectors and other display
After watching a roller-coaster ride in a film, Dr. Katrin Paschke,
head of a junior research group at the institute, felt sick to her stomach. The
realistic pictures she viewed were produced by a specific projection technology.
“With laser projection, ninety percent of the color space
of the human eye can be covered. Thus, the image quality is fascinating. Today’s
flat screens manage only about fifty percent,” Paschke said.
Although they provide particularly realistic images, the laser
projectors are too bulky in size. In flight simulators, for example, the laser system
is the size of a cabinet, which considerably limits applications and explains why
the technology has not yet been translated for use in home television sets.
Scientists are now looking for ways to develop smaller devices
that can achieve high optical output powers in the watt range and produce excellent
beam quality at the same time.
Paschke’s team has developed a red laser light source within
InnoProfile, an initiative funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and
Research, and a development contract with LDT Laser Display Technology GmbH of Jena.
LDT plans to integrate the matchbox-size laser modules into its next-generation
Scientists have developed a compact laser module for display technology that is no larger than a matchbox. Courtesy
Combining several elements, the modules are composed of a laser
chip and micro optics. A red light is generated directly by rice-grain-size semiconductor
lasers. The laser chip, which trapezoidally broadens toward the opening, produces
a high-quality beam because it can be generated compactly. It then enlarges in the
tapered section. As a result, the high output powers can be spread over a comparatively
broad opening of several hundred micrometers.
To render the radiation of the laser modules usable for laser
projection, the beam must be collimated afterward, which means that it must be adjusted
in parallel. An elaborated thermal management also ensures that the diode lasers
can be operated under optimum thermal conditions of below 15 °C. To dissipate
excessive heat, Paschke’s team used specifically manufactured industrial diamonds.
The tiny, brilliant laser light sources will ensure not only that
pin-sharp pictures are generated in planetaria and flight simulators, but also that
they will deliver more lifelike pictures into consumers’ living rooms, she
With high hopes for the entertainment industry, she expects that
holograms will leap through our homes one day.
- An interference pattern that is recorded on a high-resolution plate, the two interfering beams formed by a coherent beam from a laser and light scattered by an object. If after processing, the plate is viewed correctly by monochromatic light, a three-dimensional image of the object is seen.
- semiconductor laser
- A semiconductor material which is designed and grown for the efficient production of short wavelength stimulated emission through high gain as well as low internal losses. Materials with band gap energies which emit radiation efficiently within the desired wavelength region are used. Diodes may emit vertically in relation to the laser material junction in a VCSEL configuration or horizontally in an edge emitting configuration.
Synonymous with laser diode. Sometimes used...
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