Vermont Photonics Improves Terahertz Laser

Oct. 2, 2003
BRATTLEBORO, VT, October 1, 2003 Vermont Photonics announced its tunable terahertz laser source, the THaZer, has increased output at 230 microns (43.5 wavenumbers) with sufficient output and signal to noise ratio to make spectroscopic measurements. Previous developments at Vermont Photonics have already produced narrowband output from 1000 microns to 100 microns with robust signal between 800 microns and 360 microns.

BRATTLEBORO, VT, October 1, 2003 Vermont Photonics announced its tunable terahertz laser source, the THaZer, has increased output at 230 microns (43.5 wavenumbers) with sufficient output and signal to noise ratio to make spectroscopic measurements. Previous developments at Vermont Photonics have already produced narrowband output from 1000 microns to 100 microns with robust signal between 800 microns and 360 microns.

The push to shorter wavelengths is driven by the need to have a robust and tunable terahertz source to fill the "Terahertz Gap" for investigations of THz resonances in cell biology and nanotechnology. The Vermont Photonics THaZer addresses this need as a unique device that drives proteins and other nano-structures at their inherent resonances. When exposed to this source, much like a bell rings at a certain frequency, large molecular structures resonate in a unique fashion enabling "THz fingerprinting" for identification of molecular processes or of specific molecules such as agents of Chemical and Biological Warfare (CBW).

"We expect to have a milliwatt of power as soon as we proceed with planned hardware refinements," said Thomas Lowell, managing director and co-founder at Vermont Photonics. "We anticipate these continued improvements to the THaZer will allow high power operation to 150 microns (66.7 wavenumbers) in the near future."

A frequency in the electromagnetic spectrum of 1 THz is equal to one trillion hertz (1012 Hz). THz is the common name for the part of the electromagnetic spectrum that falls between the infrared and the microwave. The Vermont Photonics THaZer is a tunable terahertz source more than a hundred times greater in brightness than a mercury arc lamp and about ten times greater than a typical synchrotron source. It produces narrow-band THz that is tunable over a broad range, yet power consumption can be as low as 100 Watts.

Key benefits of the Vermont Photonics THaZer include:

High power-High power output is inherent in this type of electron beam-driven resonant structure. Efficiency of only 1% can yield milliwatts of output.

Small size-Currently operating as a "desktop" device, further development is underway to reduce the size to approximately 50 in3 - or roughly the size of a compact camera.

Broadly tunable and narrow bandwidth-The THaZer has operated from 100 microns to 1,000 microns with no fundamental range limit. Currently bandwidth is 20 microns. Further development of the resonator could reduce this by a factor 10,000 or more yielding a tool having exceptionally good spectral resolution for probing nanoscale resonances.

Vermont Photonics operates two experimental Smith-Purcell tunable terahertz sources, or THaZers, at its laboratory in Brattleboro VT. The THaZers were designed and built at Vermont Photonics by Dr. Mross and Mr. Lowell. The company uses its own machine shop and has experience fabricating high voltage electronics, vacuum hardware, spectroscopic instruments and THz optical systems including lenses, filters and beamsplitters.

"We expect to see many different industries take advantage of this new tool," said Vermont Photonics Co-Founder and Managing Director Michael Mross, Ph.D. "Researchers can now develop new and exciting technologies in the fields of nano, biophysics and medicine that were only dreamed of a few years ago."

For more information, visit www.vermontphotonics.com .

Laser Focus World

Sponsored Recommendations

Melles Griot® XPLAN™ CCG Lens Series

March 19, 2024
IDEX Health & Science sets a new standard with our Melles Griot® XPLAN™ CCG Lens Series fluorescence microscope imaging systems. Access superior-quality optics with off-the-shelf...

Spatial Biology

March 19, 2024
Spatial Biology refers to the field that integrates spatial information into biological research, allowing for the study of biological systems in their native spatial context....

Fluorescent Protein Optical Imaging Considerations

March 19, 2024
What factors should you consider when your incorporate fluorescent proteins in an optical imaging application? Learn more.

Custom-Engineered Optical Solutions for Your Application

March 19, 2024
We combine advanced optical design and manufacturing technology, with decades of experience in critical applications, to take you from first designs to ongoing marketplace success...

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of Laser Focus World, create an account today!