The arms race of counterfeit and anti-counterfeit technology is as old as the commercial world itself, but lasers may have finally delivered a way to defeat the organised crime that profits so much from fake versions of the products people crave so much.
The advantage of a laser is its brightness; the drawback, or what could be considered a drawback in some circumstances, is it only emits light at one wavelength. Supercontinuum sources are sold as having the brightness of a laser with the spectral coverage of a lamp, meaning the user can pick and choose the wavelength required for their application.
Eyes may be the windows to the soul but they are also good indicators of disease and they suffer from a variety of conditions too, whether that is cataracts or macular degeneration – so a diagnosis tool for ophthalmology, the study and treatment of disorders and diseases is a key medical technology. That tool also has to be non-invasive because of the delicate structures of the eye, and photonics has been found to be the best solution.
Nothing is faster than light and computational speeds are progressing to the point where the metal circuits that link microprocessors are holding back what can be done. To solve this problem photonics has the answer: it is referred to as silicon photonics. Recently the subject of a European Union project called Helios, researchers want photonic microelectronics to be as ubiquitous as sunlight.
Laser Mech (or Laser Mechanisms, to give the company its original title) was founded by William Fredrick in Detroit, USA, in 1980, as a supplier of CO2 beam delivery systems. Fredrick had previously founded Photon Sources, a CO2 laser manufacturer, in the 1970s.