Navigation Links
Optics made to measure

If you are in the business of developing high-speed electronic components, it pays not to lose sight of the electrons. To keep track of them you will need to use dedicated optical elements, such as those now on offer from UltraFast Innovations GmbH. The new company, which has just been founded by researchers at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitt (LMU) in Munich and the Max Planck Society (MPG), manufactures specialized mirrors and other optical elements for use with pulsed laser light and x-rays. These components allow to generate and manipulate ultrashort light pulses. Pulses of extremely short duration, in turn, make it possible to observe the movement of the electrons in atoms and molecules in real time. Mirrors suitable for this purpose have only been commercially available to a limited extent until now. They will be of interest to companies that manufacture laser systems for industrial applications, as well as to research groups in the area of quantum and x-ray optics. LMU Munich and the MPG each have a 50 % stake in the new joint-venture.

Electrons are really fast they can migrate from one atom to another within attoseconds (an attosecond is a billionth of a billionth fraction of a second). To observe such rapid movements, a highly refined optical set-up is needed that permits the production of extremely short light pulses. Components for such systems can now be fabricated to customer specifications by UltraFast Innovations GmbH.

The company offers an all-inclusive service, starting from the design of the elements to surface coating of mirrors and the quality inspection of their optical parameters. Mirror coatings can be optimized with respect to features such as high reflectivity, wide spectral bandwidth or a particular filter function. UltraFast Innovations GmbH is backed by the expertise of the participating scientists. The research teams led by Ferenc Krausz, director at the Max-Planck-Institute of Quantum Optics and professor at LMU, and Ulf Kleineberg, who is also a professor at LMU include leading experts in the field of specialized optics. Ferenc Krausz is regarded as one of the inventors of the so-called chirped mirror, a particular type of mirror that enables the creation of ultrashort laser pulses, and he is the holder of several patents on this technology.

Chirped mirrors allow one, for example, to compensate for the phenomenon of material-dependent dispersion, which occurs if the reflective surface delays light of different colors to different degrees an effect that can increase pulse duration. Indeed, it was the ability of the chirped mirror to diminish this effect that first enabled the generation of ultrashort light pulses. With the aid of such mirrors, researchers were able, in 2008, to produce flashes that lasted for only 80 attoseconds, in this way breaking the 100-attosecond barrier for the first time, and creating the shortest light pulses ever generated in the laboratory. In 80 attoseconds light travels a distance of less than one thousandth of a millimeter.

"Such light pulses give us the opportunity to observe the movements of electrons in atoms and molecules in real time", explains Dr. Jens Rauschenberger, a member of Ferenc Krausz's research group and managing director of the new company. "It is like using a camera. To capture a sharp image of a fast-moving object, you need very short exposure times."

A better understanding of how electrons behave is of practical relevance for communication technologies, for example, and will help to further improve the efficiency of data processing. Short bursts of visible light are already being used for imaging techniques in medicine. Optical coherence tomography, for instance, is an important tool in ophthalmology, allowing one to examine the retina.

One especially notable aspect of UltraFast Innovations GmbH lies in its very close links with current basic research. "Since the development and manufacture of optical elements is an integral part of our scientific work, we can immediately incorporate the latest research results into our designs", says Jens Rauschenberger. "New optics can then immediately be subjected to practical tests." In addition, the establishment of UltraFast Innovations allows more efficient utilization of the high-precision coating facilities at the Service Center for Surface Coatings and Optics, which is part of the "Munich Centre for Advanced Photonics" (MAP). And the new firm also creates other benefits, according to Jens Rauschenberger: "Apart from enabling better utilization of existing technical capacities, we at UltraFast Innovations can also provide important new impulses for research activities, because the profits from the business can be reinvested in the scientific institutes, or used to finance new positions".


Contact: Dr. Jens Rauschenberger
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitt Mnchen

Related biology technology :

1. Taming tiny, unruly waves for nano optics
2. PennWell Launches Bio-Optics World Magazine and Web Site
3. Abbott Expands Its Growing Medical Device Business With Acquisition of Advanced Medical Optics (AMO)
4. New force-fluorescence device measures motion previously undetectable
5. Researchers measure carbon nanotube interaction
6. Pathway Diagnostics Announces Patent Issuance for the Diagnostic Measurement of HIV Tropism for the Initiation or Modification of HIV Therapy
7. SoluLinK Introduces ChromaLink(TM) Biotin Labeling Kit to Biotinylate and Measure With One Reagent
8. APIC Statement on Need for Increased Prevention Measures for Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAIs)
9. Chemists measure copper levels in zinc oxide nanowires
10. FDA Grants Market Clearance to Aerocrine Inc.s NIOX MINO(R): a New Hand-Held Device to Measure Airway Inflammation in Asthma
11. Femtogram-level chemical measurements now possible, U. of I. team reports
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/25/2015)... Md. , Nov. 25, 2015  PharmAthene, Inc. ... Directors has adopted a stockholder rights plan (Rights Plan) ... net operating loss carryforwards (NOLs) under Section 382 of ... --> PharmAthene,s use of its NOLs ... "ownership change" as defined in Section 382 of the ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 2015 Studies reveal the differences ... and pave the way for more effective treatment for one ...   --> --> ... problems in cats, yet relatively little was understood about the ... have been conducted by researchers from the WALTHAM Centre for ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... -- Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: NBIX ) announced today ... Neurocrine Biosciences, will be presenting at the 27th Annual ... . .   Listeners ... prior to the presentation to download or install any ... available on the website approximately one hour after the ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... A long-standing partnership ... Professionals (OPBAP) has been formalized with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding. ... OPBAP leaders Capt. Karl Minter and Capt. Albert Glenn Tuesday, November 24, 2015, ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:11/19/2015)... 2015  Based on its in-depth analysis of the ... with the 2015 Global Frost & Sullivan Award for ... presents this award to the company that has developed ... of the market it serves. The award recognizes the ... on customer base demands, the overall impact it has ...
(Date:11/18/2015)... 18, 2015  As new scientific discoveries deepen our ... other healthcare providers face challenges in better using that ... In addition, as more children continue to survive pediatric ... and old age. John M. Maris, M.D ... of Philadelphia (CHOP) . --> John ...
(Date:11/17/2015)... 17, 2015 Paris from ... --> Paris from 17 th until ... biometrics innovation leader, has invented the first combined scanner in ... same scanning surface. Until now two different scanners were required: ... can capture both on the same surface. This innovation ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):