M Squared Lasers partners with Fraunhofer on environmental monitoring research

May 24, 2013
Glasgow, Scotland--M Squared Lasers launched a research partnership with the Glasgow hub of the Fraunhofer Centre for Applied Photonics that could improve the way environmental bodies and industry monitors waste gas emissions.

Glasgow, Scotland--Laser source manufacturer M Squared Lasers launched a research partnership with the Glasgow hub of the world's largest applied research body, the Fraunhofer Centre for Applied Photonics (CAP) that could improve the way environmental bodies and industry monitors waste gas emissions. The project is co-funded by the Technology Strategy Board.

The 'Synoposis' project will focus on how lasers can be used to more easily detect a broader range of potentially hazardous emissions coming from landfill sites, industrial plants, and chemical processes. Broadly tunable infrared light sources developed by M Squared will broaden the wavelengths that are currently able to identify contaminants, which absorb light at different wavelengths.

Current technology has difficulty in accessing the full range of wavelengths in the infrared that are known to be rich in so-called molecular "fingerprints"—tell-tale absorption features that can identify a variety of substances. The M Squared project could provide benefit to any organization involved in environmental monitoring.

Graeme Malcolm, chief executive of M Squared Lasers, attended the launch of the UK Fraunhofer CAP this week (Thursday, May 23) at the Royal Academy of Engineering in London, with a keynote speech from business secretary Vince Cable.

Malcolm, who spoke at the Glasgow launch of the Fraunhofer CAP laboratories in April, said, "This partnership is a great example of how academia and industry can work together to provide technology which has real-world benefit. At the moment, scanning for these substances is a bit like having only one radio station tuned into your stereo—we need to find what else is out there and that means increasing the range of frequencies we are able to scan. We hope this research will ultimately yield the kind of laser technology which can provide fast, accurate and reliable data about waste gas emissions to improve environmental and commercial performance."

The Fraunhofer partnership provides M Squared with access to additional resource and research capability which would otherwise require significant financial investment.

The Glasgow research hub, based at the University of Strathclyde, focuses on advanced photonics—the manipulation of light—and is part of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft network, Europe’s largest application-oriented research organization.

Tim Holt, executive director of Fraunhofer UK Research said, “This is one of the first projects started in the newly established Fraunhofer Centre for Applied Photonics in Glasgow. It is an exciting start and a perfect example of how we will work with companies seeking to innovate their products and processes.”

SOURCE: M Squared Lasers; http://www.m2lasers.com

About the Author

Gail Overton | Senior Editor (2004-2020)

Gail has more than 30 years of engineering, marketing, product management, and editorial experience in the photonics and optical communications industry. Before joining the staff at Laser Focus World in 2004, she held many product management and product marketing roles in the fiber-optics industry, most notably at Hughes (El Segundo, CA), GTE Labs (Waltham, MA), Corning (Corning, NY), Photon Kinetics (Beaverton, OR), and Newport Corporation (Irvine, CA). During her marketing career, Gail published articles in WDM Solutions and Sensors magazine and traveled internationally to conduct product and sales training. Gail received her BS degree in physics, with an emphasis in optics, from San Diego State University in San Diego, CA in May 1986.

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