A team of scientists from the University of York, the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) Germany, and Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands, have developed a new class of magnetic material which flips magnetic state when zapped by an ultra fast laser pulse. This should pave the way to mass storage devices with improved performance and power efficiency compared to current day technology.
The new material demonstrates the use of a synthetic ferrimagnet comprising a sandwich of two ferromagnetic materials and a non-magnetic spacer layer. The spacer layer engineers the coupling between the two ferromagnets so that they align opposite one another. When subjected to an ultrafast laser pulse, this structure spontaneously switches its magnetic state representing writing a single bit of data. [via]
A New Class of Magnetic Material - [Link]
Arduino UNO R3 mini laser cutter:
A few years ago I saw an Instructable where Groover had used a pair of DVD-RW drives to make a pocket laser engraver. Inspired by the idea, driven by the recent purchase of a full-sized 50 watt CO2 laser cutter, and roused by the launch of the Microcontroller contest I took the decision to have a crack at making my own mini laser engraver.
The MicroSlice – A tiny Arduino laser cutter - [Link]
You can use this cutter to cut very accurate PCB stencils on your home:
Are you sick and tired of using a tooth pick to apply solder paste? Are you still using through hole components because you don’t want to deal with soldering surface mount devices (SMD)? If so, this post provides you with guidelines for building your very own laser cutter for cutting PCB stencils. With a total cost of approximately $200 (it can be significantly less if you already have parts laying around), this project can pay for itself very quickly. While you can get “low cost” stencils for your PCBs, they still can be quite expensive if you are only creating one or two boards.
DIY Laser Cutter for PCB Stencils - [Link]
This document covers a few of the applications where lasers can be used during the fabrication of crystalline silicon
(c-Si) solar cells.
Manufacturing c-Si Solar Cells with Lasers - [Link]
Manufacture pcb using vinyl sticker and laser printer. Faster, easier and cheaper then ever.
Manufacture PCB using Vinyl Sticker and Laser Printer - [Link]
What is the biggest constraint in creating tiny lasers? Pump power. Yes sir, all lasers require a certain amount of pump power from an outside source to begin emitting a coherent beam of light and the smaller a laser is, the greater the pump power needed to reach this state. The laser cavity consists of a tiny metal rod enclosed by a ring of metal-coated, quantum wells of semiconductor material. A team of researchers from the University of California has developed a technique that uses quantum electrodynamic effects in coaxial nanocavities to lower the amount of pump power needed. This allowed them to build the world’s smallest room-temperature, continuous wave laser. The whole device is only half a micron in diameter (human hair has on average a thickness of 50 micron). [via]
World’s Smallest Laser Is Smaller Than Dust - [Link]
With the help of the most powerful X-ray laser in the world researchers of the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy have heated a piece of aluminum to a temperature of two million degrees Celsius (3.6 million degrees Fahrenheit). They also managed to verify the temperature achieved. This work could be an important step to a better understanding of nuclear fusion processes that go on in the cores of stars and giant planets like Jupiter. [via]
3,600,000 F – The Hottest Thing on Earth - [Link]
RFID antennas are traditionally produced by etching, but a new process developed by Walki, a manufacturer of technical laminates, aims to displace etching by laser cutting. The process uses paper as the substrate and eliminates the need for liquid chemicals, making process residue easily recyclable. Laser cutting also accelerates the design to production cycle and allows extremely precise fabrication of circuit board patterns. The finished antenna, consisting of just paper and aluminium, is fully recyclable.
The new technology is dubbed Walki-4E where 4E stands for efficient, exact, ecological and economical and is based on a laminate of aluminium on a paper substrate, with the aluminium foil cut in patterns using a laser. It can be used to produce any type of flexible circuit, ranging from RFID antennas to radiators and flexible displays. The first product to be launched using this technology is Walki-Pantenna, a UHF RFID antenna. [via]
Laser cutting makes antennas greener - [Link]
The Audrey Braille Display – LIVE! @ Utopia Mechanicus. David writes – [via]
It’s taken far longer than I wanted, but I am finally looking at a finished prototype for the Audrey Braille Display. Made of 3mm Acrylic laser-cut pieces (via the Victoria Makerspace laser cutter), it uses two stepper motors, connects to an Arduino (and LadyAda Motor Driver board), and displays 5 characters.
The Audrey Braille Display - [Link]
It’s a “programmable disco ball,” a “cat toy for humans,” and a “personal laser light show,” all rolled into one. That’s how one Matt Leone describes his latest creation, aptly known as the Laser Ball. To realize his dream, Leone drilled a set of holes into a garden variety tennis ball, and inserted about 14 laser diodes, each with an attached strip of diffraction grating. Said diodes were then synced up with an Arduino-equipped Teensy microcontroller nestled within the ball, alongside a rechargeable battery – http://leonelabs.blogspot.com
Make a laser ball… -[Link]