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Chapter 5:
Lasers
Editor(s): Chandra Roychoudhuri
Abstract
Lasers are devices that amplify or increase the intensity of light to produce a highly directional, high-intensity beam that typically has a very pure frequency or wavelength. They come in sizes ranging from approximately one-tenth the diameter of a human hair to that of a very large building. Lasers produce powers ranging from nanowatts to a billion trillion watts (1021 W) for very short bursts. They produce wavelengths or frequencies ranging from the microwave region and infrared to the visible, ultraviolet, vacuum ultraviolet, and into the soft-X-ray spectral regions. They generate the shortest bursts of light that man has yet produced, or approximately five million-billionths of a second.
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CHAPTER 5
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