Related topics: light · laser · electrons · molecules · atoms

How photoblueing disturbs microscopy

The latest developments in fluorescence microscopy make it possible to image individual molecules in cells or molecular complexes with a spatial resolution of up to 20 nanometres. However, under certain circumstances, an ...

Simply speaking while infected can potentially spread COVID-19

COVID-19 can spread from asymptomatic but infected people through small aerosol droplets in their exhaled breath. Most studies of the flow of exhaled air have focused on coughing or sneezing, which can send aerosols flying ...

X-ray double flashes control atomic nuclei

A team of researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg has coherently controlled nuclear excitations using suitably shaped X-ray light for the first time. In the experiment performed at the ...


A laser is a device that emits light (electromagnetic radiation) through a process called stimulated emission. The term laser is an acronym for light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation. Laser light is usually spatially coherent, which means that the light either is emitted in a narrow, low-divergence beam, or can be converted into one with the help of optical components such as lenses. Typically, lasers are thought of as emitting light with a narrow wavelength spectrum ("monochromatic" light). This is not true of all lasers, however: some emit light with a broad spectrum, while others emit light at multiple distinct wavelengths simultaneously. The coherence of typical laser emission is distinctive. Most other light sources emit incoherent light, which has a phase that varies randomly with time and position.

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