Plasma killer?

The profile of laser television was raised again in October by an unveiling “down under.

Nov 1st, 2006

The profile of laser television was raised again in October by an unveiling “down under.” In January, Novalux (Sunnyvale, CA) showed a prototype laser TV at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas (see www.laserfocusworld.com/articles/248114). Then last month Australian company Arasor, which produces integrated optoelectronic chips, teamed with Novalux to unveil in Sydney “the world’s first laser television.” Picked up by several news outlets there, the unveiling included interviews with Larry Marshall (a director of Arasor and advisor to Laser Focus World) and Jean-Michel Pelaprat (CEO of Novalux). They say the new TV will cost half as much as current plasma and LCD versions, with superior performance and power consumption-benefits that, boasts Peleprat, will mean the death of plasma. He expects the new TVs to be available to consumers by Christmas 2007. Of course, the timing of this unveiling is no coincidence-Arasor is about to make a public offering in Australia. Nonetheless, other firms are also starting to “talk up” large-screen laser-based displays as well as alternatives such as LEDs (see Optoelectronics World: Imaging and Displays, which follows page 72).

In other advances featured this month, newly developed terahertz systems are moving the technology nearer to deployment outside the laboratory for applications that include nondestructive inspection, security, and biomedical diagnostics. Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, for instance, have demonstrated a handheld real-time terahertz explosive-detection device (see page 89). Advances in large-core fibers have led to significant increases in the peak power obtainable from a fiber-based source-megawatt peak powers are available in nanosecond pulses with excellent beam quality and efficiency (see page 94). And in the field of astronomy, gallium nitride-based UV detectors are providing new opportunities in short-wave sensing (see page 109), even as plans advance for the new James Webb space-based telescope, which will see farther in the IR than ever before (see page 101).

Stephen G. Anderson
Associate Publisher/Editor in Chief
stevega@pennwell.com

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