SASER: Acoustic laser generates ultrahigh-freq sound waves

SASER: Acoustic laser generates ultrahigh-freq sound waves

Postby arunraje on Wed Nov 04, 2009 1:25 pm

Acoustic laser generates ultrahigh-frequency sound waves.(EMERGING TECHNOLOGY)(University of Nottingham)(Brief article)

Anew type of acoustic laser device called a Saser produces an intense beam of uniform sound waves on a nano scale. Its developers, scientists at University of Nottingham, U.K., and colleagues in Ukraine, say it could have "significant and useful applications in the worlds of computing, imaging, and even antiterrorist security screening."

The Saser mimics the laser, but it produces a beam of sonic vibrations called phonons that travel through a tiny structure called a superlattice. The superlattice is made of about 50 super-thin sheets of two alternating semiconductor materials--gallium arsenide and aluminum arsenide--each layer just a few atoms thick. When stimulated by a power source (such as a light beam), the phonons multiply, bouncing back and forth between the layers of the lattice, until they escape the structure in the form of an ultrahigh-frequency phonon beam.

The Saser is reportedly the first device to emit sound waves in the terahertz (THz) frequency range--the beam of coherent acoustic waves it produces has nanometer wavelengths. The super-lattice device can generate, manipulate, and detect these sound waves.

One of the Saser's potential applications is to look for defects in nanometer-scale devices such as microelectronic circuits. Another is medical imaging and security screening.

For more information: Dr. Anthony "Tony" Kent, University of Nottingham, University Park, Nottingham NG7 2RD, UK; +44 (0)115 951 5143;; A-sonic-boom-in-the-world-of-lasers.html
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