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Mar 30

(One of seventeen youtube shorts from the program chairs highlighting hot topics for CLEO 2012)

This post originally appeared on Jim’s CLEO Blog and is reproduced with permission from the author.

For a few years now CLEO conference organizers have been posting youtube shorts highlighting contributed talks, symposia, research trends, and any new or unique directions for the upcoming conference. This year there are seventeen videos from the program chairs, all worth watching. However, for those who prefer text over A/V, I thought it might be helpful to highlight the highlights here.

Conference Program Stats

-The 2012 program has been selected from a record number of submissions.

-In just its second year, CLEO’s new Technology and Applications Conference saw a 50 % increase in submissions.

-350 papers, 15 % of all submissions, live in the subcommittee sections “Nano-optics and Plasmonics” or “Micro- and Nano-Photonic Devices”

-Subcommittee section: “Fiber Amplifiers, Lasers and Devices” was the single committee that received the most submissions

CLEO Applications and Technology: Government and National Science, Security and Standards Applications

In his youtube short, subcommittee Chair Ian Mckinnie of Lockheed Martin Coherent Technologies briefly discusses the two tracks of this subcommittee: 1) Ultrafast Laser Applications and 2) Instrumentation and Sensing.

Mckinnie talks about how the ultrafast program covers a broad range ultrafast laser applications spanning those performed at large facility-class systems to those on a bench top or operating table. These are exemplified by the tutorial talk, AW3J1, “Enabling Science at the Advanced Light Source X-ray Facility” that will be given by Roger Falcone of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory from 4:30-5:30 pm on May 9, and the invited talk AW3J4, “Applications of Ultrafast Lasers” by Mike Mielke of Raydiance Inc., also on May 9, but from 6:00-6:30 pm

The Advanced Light Source (ALS) is a large synchrotron source that produces laser light over an extremely broad spectrum including the hard-to-reach soft x-ray region. Falcone will be discussing the use of the coherent radiation at this user-facility for applications such as precise material processing and biomedical research.

On the other hand, Mielke will be discussing the use of compact fiber systems for micromachining and laser surgery. See blog post “Machining with Ultrafast Pulses” for some stunning videos and more information on these compact micromachining systems.

On the remote sensing side, Massayuki Fujita, from the Institute of for Laser Technology in Osaka, will be giving an invited talk on an application of remote sensing not typically found in the CLEO conference program- nondestructive inspection for heavy industrial processes. Fujita’s talk, ATuG3 “Nondestructive Inspection for Heavy Construction” can be heard on Tuesday May 8, at 2:30 pm.

CLEO Applications and Technology: Industrial Applications

In his video short, subcommittee chair Eric Mottay of Amplitude Systemes discuses the two major trends of the Industrial Applications subcommittee: 1) micro- and nanofabrication techniques and 2) applications of graphene.

Talks in the latter category can be found in a joint session with CLEO: Science and Innovation subcommittee six in session “Graphene and Carbon Advanced Photonic Materials” which will be held form 11:00am-1:00 pm on May 8. This session will host talks presenting graphene-based devices such as detectors, modulators, and tunable resonators. Recall that Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov were awarded the 2010 Nobel Prize for showing the “exceptional” properties of graphene such as it being simultaneously the thinnest and strongest material, having better electrical conductivity than copper, better heat conduction than all other known materials, and having nearly 100 % transparency yet an extremely high density (so dense helium atoms cannot pass through). Be sure to see how this “magical” material is being translated into devices that may be on the market in the next three to five years.

On the other hand, the invited talks for this subcommitee all center around micro- and nano- fabrication processes. Arnold Gillner of the Fraunhofer Institute will discuss how ultrafast lasers can be used for surface processing at the micro- and nanoscale level for applications in light guiding, fabrication of low friction surfaces, or wear-resistant surfaces. His talk, ATu3L1, “Micromanufacturing and nano surface functionalisation with ultrashort pulsed lasers” is scheduled for May 8, at 4:30 pm. Additionally, Paul Webster from Queen’s University will be discussing online monitoring during fabrication, particularly concerning the control of depth, in invited talk ATu3L5, “Inline Coherent Imaging: Measuring and Controlling Depth in Industrial Laser Processes,” on May 8, at 5:45 pm and Rick Russo from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory will be speaking about real-time spectroscopy of a sample after it has been turned into a plasma through laser ablation in talk, AW1H3 “Laser Plasmas for Spectrochemistry” on May 9, at 11:00 am.

CLEO Applications and Technology: Energy and Environment

In his video short, subcommittee chair Christian Wetzel from Rensselaer Polytechnich Institute discusses two trends… click here to read the full original post

May 17

Few high-power laser applications have attracted controversy in the same way as nuclear fusion. But with the National Ignition Campaign due to go live within the next few months, residual doubters and dissenters may soon be silenced. Viewed in this context CLEO provides a unique opportunity to discuss laser fusion at the dawn of a new era of scientific understanding and exploitation.

Laser Fusion

Thursday, May 20. 10.30 am

Presided by Timothy Carrig (Lockheed Martin, USA) this session will discuss the fundamentals of controlled nuclear fusion, the engineering requirements for successful Inertial Fusion Energy, and a paper from the Institute  for Laser Technology,  Japan, on a novel high-power laser design featuring cryogenic Yb:YAG and active total internal reflection mirrors.

Extreme Light

Thursday, May 20. 2.30pm

In an invited paper, Brian MacGowan (Lawrence Livermore Natl. Lab, USA) will describe progress in delivering the National Ignition Campaign. Originally prescribed June 2005 by the National Nuclear Security Administration, part of the US Department of Energy, it will be fascinating to learn if this nuclear fusion experiment is on schedule and what hurdles have been overcome along the way.

By most accounts NIC is on track to produce net useful energy, albeit in a single-shot configuration, within the next few months.  In the longer term, physicists must work out laser fusion can yield net useful energy on a sustainable basis. No mean feat, but I am sure MacGowan will have some answers.

Low down on HiPER

Scanning the CLEO proceedings I find no submissions from the European High Power laser Energy Research (HiPER) consortium. Originally conceived to demonstrate the feasibility of laser driven fusion as a future energy source, the birth of HiPER will coincide with the attainment of ignition and energy gain on the NIF laser in the USA. It would be great to hear from the HiPER consortium at CLEO next year. Here is a trailer on the HiPER effort.

Dr David Nugent is Founder and CEO of Elucidare Limited, a boutique technology development and investment advisory business.

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