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The smallest laser in the world

Release time:2021-01-22 source:Dongguan Xinke Laser Technology Co., Ltd
 Researchers recently demonstrated the smallest ever laser that contains a nanoparticle only 44 nanometers in diameter. The device is named "spaser" because it can produce a kind of radiation called surface plasma. This new technology allows photons to be confined to a very small space, and some physicists believe that, like transistors for today's electronic products, spaser may become the foundation of optical computers in the future.

Mikhail nokinov, a physics professor at the materials research center of Norfolk University, said that the best consumer electronics products today can run at about 10 GHz, but optical devices in the future can run at hundreds of terahertz. Generally speaking, it is difficult to achieve miniaturization of optical devices because photons cannot be confined to a region smaller than half of their wavelength. But devices that interact with light in the form of surface plasmon can confine light to very close sites.

Nojinov said that at present, scientists are working hard to explore the theoretical research of a new generation of nano electronic devices based on plasma. Different from other previous plasma devices, spaser can effectively generate and amplify these light waves. Nokinov and his colleagues published the findings in the recent journal Nature.

Spaser consists of a single nanoparticle with a diameter of only 44 nm. The functions of other parts of the laser are similar to those of conventional lasers. In ordinary lasers, photons bounce between two mirrors through a gain medium that amplifies light. The light in the sprayer rebounds around the surface of the gold sphere in the core of a nanoparticle in the form of plasma.

The challenge here is to ensure that this energy does not dissipate rapidly from the metal surface. Nokinov and his team achieved this by spraying a dye embedded silicon layer on the gold ball. The silicon layer can be used as a gain medium. The light from the spaser can be kept in the limited region as a plasma, and can also leave the particle surface as a photon in the visible range. Like a laser, the spaser has to pump in the necessary energy, which researchers use to bombard particles with pulses of light.

The size of a conventional laser depends on the wavelength of the light it uses. The distance between the reflecting surfaces should not be less than half of the wavelength of the light. It is about 200 nm in the visible light range. Spaser solves this limitation by using plasma. Mr. nojinov said that spaser may be able to achieve a nanometer size, but any nano particle smaller than this size will lose its function.

According to mark stockman, a physics professor at the University of Georgia in the United States, compared with the fastest transistors at present, the speed of spaser is 1000 times faster although it has the same nano scale, which makes it possible to manufacture ultra fast amplifiers, logic elements and microprocessors.

Nojinov said that spaser can not only find a place in the field of photonic computers, but also be used in the field of conventional lasers. A more realistic application field is magnetic data storage industry. Nowadays, the magnetic data storage medium used in hard disk has reached its physical limit. One of the ways to expand its storage capacity is to heat the medium with very small light spots in its recording process, which can only be achieved by using nano laser.


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