New 'dark pulse' laser uses darkness instead of light

Normally, when you think about a laser (such as the one above) you picture beams of light, right? Well, no longer — researchers have developed what's called a "dark pulse" laser that uses "non-light" instead. With a sinister name like that, you'd think the dark pulse laser would be burning holes in tanks. In fact, it's amazingly benign.

Scientists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the University of Colorado at Boulder say that the dark laser (or "daser," if you must) could improve communications technologies or computers that perform intensive networking. That's because the dark beams have a short, exact wavelength, with less longevity than a traditional laser but more stability.

To create these precise dark pulses, the scientists used millions of tiny quantum dot crystals, which will emit light once they are stimulated by an electrical current. Have them all emitting the same frequency and you've got yourself a laser.

"Dark lasers" sound like science fiction, don't they? Well, we'll just have to wait and see what other kind of real-world applications the dark pulses have.

Via The Register