Coherent introduces all-solid-state 460-nm blue laser

Aug. 17, 2001
Designed to enable a new generation of digital imaging systems, inspection systems, and bio-instrumentation, the Sapphire laser is free from limitations associated with the air-cooled argon-ion lasers currently used in those applications. The Sapphire laser is 90% smaller, consumes 98% less power, and dissipates 98% less heat than a comparable air-cooled argon-ion laser.

Santa Clara, CA, Aug 15, 2001 – Coherent Inc. claims a milestone in applied physics with the introduction of the world's first commercial solid-state 460-nm blue laser. Sharing an identical product platform as Coherent's prior Sapphire products, the Sapphire 460-10 is the company's third in a series of products incorporating its optically pumped semiconductor laser (OPSL) technology.

The OPSL technology belongs to a class of Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Lasers (VCSELs). In conventional VCSELs, laser emission is driven by electrical current. The OPSL technology uses optical (photon) energy to drive laser emission. Optical pumping allows higher power than that achieved with electrical pumping.

Designed to enable a new generation of digital imaging systems, inspection systems, and bio-instrumentation, the Sapphire laser is free from limitations associated with the air-cooled argon-ion lasers currently used in those applications. The Sapphire laser is 90% smaller, consumes 98% less power, and dissipates 98% less heat than a comparable air-cooled argon-ion laser.

Prior to shipping the 460-nm Sapphire, the initial product shipments included both a 980-nm OPSL for the telecom marketplace and a 488-nm blue laser for the bio-instrumentation and wafer inspection markets.

Bernard Couillaud, Coherent President and CEO, commented, “In addition to a very small and efficient package, the Sapphire technology enables our customers to choose whatever predetermined wavelengths they need for their particular application. The choice of wavelength is achieved by varying the growth of the OPSL's semiconductor material (which is changed inside a common platform). This engineering breakthrough is the direct result of the joint efforts and cooperation among our employees in Finland, Germany, and the United States.”

For more information, visit Coherent.

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