Cover Story

Photovoltaics: Lighting the Way to a Brighter Future

Sarah Kurtz and Daniel Friedman

Technology to concentrate solar energy is still under development, but could be poised for rapid growth. In fact, if the rate of progress for the current photovoltaic industry is sustained and costs come down, sunlight could become a... more>>

Features

Measuring the Wavelength of Light with a Ruler

Keigo Iizuka

Almost 20 years ago, Arthur L. Schawlow, the 1981 Nobel laureate, told the author that a metal ruler could be used to measure the wavelength of light. Since then, he has always wanted to verify the accuracy of such an experiment for himself. He finally has; the method and results are reported in this article. more>>


Fiber Lasers: High-Power Devices in Compact Packages

Nasser Peyghambarian and Axel Schulzgen

Fiber lasers can deliver large amounts of energy to a target in a very precise but flexible way. They have many uses in industry, defense and medicine, in addition to traditional applications in communications, spectroscopy and remote sensing. This article reviews progress that has been made with high-power and solid-state lasers, and explores the emerging role that fiber lasers play as a high-power laser source. more>>


Refined Raman Spectroscopy: Bringing New Insight into Industrial Processes

Sophie Morel and Fran Adar

Fiber probes and ease of use make Raman spectroscopy systems attractive for monitoring process control in a range of industries from pharmaceuticals to petrochemicals. The authors describe the Raman effect and discuss system and monitoring basics. more>>