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Schlieren, Switzerland

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2007.3.5 | Award Amount: 13.65M | Year: 2008

FAST-DOT aims to implement a new range of ultrafast quantum-dot lasers for critical bio-medical applications. This project will develop portable, low-cost, reliable, highly efficient ultrashort pulse and ultra-broadband tuneable laser sources. The key technical innovation quantum dots (QDs) - are based on novel semiconductor nanostructure clusters which demonstrate remarkable new photonic properties. QD structures will afford major advances in ultrafast science and technology by exploiting the unique combination of QD properties (high optical quality, efficient light generation, ultrafast carrier dynamics and broadband gain bandwidth) at wavelength range which not easily accessible with current technologies. The FAST-DOT consortium brings together a unique and compelling group of world-leaders in the physics of QDs and QD photonic devices, system integrators and biophotonic. This research will realise a full understanding of the underlying ultrafast properties and physics of QD structures and exploit these effects in the construction of novel highly compact, reliable and environmentally-stable sources of ultra-short pulses. The new QD sources will be investigated and validated in a range of bio-photonic applications including OCT; Non-linear Microscopy; Nanosurgery and minimally invasive diagnostics. The availability of compact and inexpensive ultrashort pulse lasers will have widespread impact in uptake by making many applications more affordable and opening up new application areas. The project unites 18 complementary European research groups and companies with international reputations in the development of semiconductor materials and their use in efficient ultra-fast lasers, related applications and marketing. All of the groups have record of collaboration and a strong record in producing high quality results and joint publications. This programme will contribute to further extending Europes world-leading position of in photonics and ultrafast technology.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2011.3.5 | Award Amount: 4.54M | Year: 2011

2-micron fibre laser technology has the potential to open a whole new area of ICT & industrial applications. The well-known power scaling advantages, from increased core size & higher non-linear thresholds, offer a tenfold increase in raw power compared with current 1-micron technology. Simultaneously, a host of applications specific to this almost unexplored region of the eye-safe spectrum become possible, including: industrial processing, free-space communications & medical procedures. Undoubtedly more will arise as currently exotic wavelengths become readily available. To date, the lack of suitable components has blocked R&D in this field. However, several recent disruptive component developments have changed the landscape: 1) Ho-doped silica fibre technology has advanced, providing a solid base for development; 2) All-fibre component technology offers integrated functionality; 3) Better isolator materials and new designs offer realistic potential for effective 2-micron devices; 4) New modulator materials & designs allow Q-switches, filters & switches; 5) Carbon nanotube composites offer effective sub-ps modelockers; 6) 790nm diode technology is ripe for development, for optimum direct pumping of Tm. ISLA will seize this opportunity to develop a set of building blocks to define an integrated modular common platform for 2-micron Ho-doped fibre lasers consisting of compatible and self-consistent fibre, components and laser diodes. Not only will advances beyond the state-of-the-art in each of these component areas be achieved, but this will be attained through a coordinated program to deliver a genuinely integrated technology platform. Continuous wave, pulsed and short pulse lasers will be demonstrated through industrial applications (transparent plastic cutting and PV cell scribing). An industrial user group will identify new applications and aid exploitation routes, and the project results will be promoted within recognised standards bodies to benefit the whole of EU industry

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: FoF-ICT-2013.7.2 | Award Amount: 14.01M | Year: 2013

During more than 50 years of the laser existence, they have been proved as the unique tool for diverse material processing application. New application ideas, coming from universities and research institutions, are usually implemented by spin-off companies with limited resources for market penetration. Research laboratories are using universal laser tools, while effective and low-cost production requires adaptation of the processes and equipment during the technology assessment by the end-user.\nThe APPOLO project seeks to establish and coordinate connections between the end-users, which have demand on laser technologies for (micro)fabrication, knowledge accumulated in the application laboratories of the research institutes, as well as universities and the laser equipment manufacturers (preferable SMEs) of novel lasers, beam control and guiding, etc. The goal is to facilitate faster validation of the process feasibility and adaptation of the equipment for manufacturing, as well as assessment of the selected production processes. The core of the consortium comprises laser application laboratories around Europe which are connected into a virtual hub to accumulate knowledge and infrastructure and promote the easy-to-access environment for the development and validation of laser-based technologies. All the partners have chosen a few directions for the assessment of novel laser technologies: in ultra-short pulse laser scribing for monolithic interconnections in thin film CIGS solar cells - from lasers to pilot lines; use of the lasers and intelligent scanning in smart surface texturing for automotive and printing/decoration industries and for 3D flexible electronics.\nImplementation of the APPOLO project will help the partners from European photonics industry to preserve their competitiveness and penetrate new niches on the global market. The equipment builders for automotive, photovoltaics, electronics and printing industries will benefit from faster integration of innovative technologies which will provide the new-quality consumer products, including low-cost and high-efficiency solar cells, comfortable interior and functionality of cars, smart sensors for environmental monitoring and more.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: BSG-SME | Phase: SME-2013-1 | Award Amount: 1.95M | Year: 2013

There is a strong pull for practical ultrafast laser sources from a magnitude of applications and associated markets. These applications often demand systems with high reliability and maintenance-/alignment-free operation while at the same time, be highly adaptable to cater the numerous requirements imposed by the specific application. One of the key issues that prevent state-of-the-art ultrafast lasers offering such capabilities is their intrinsic complexity which often causes the requirement of intervention from highly skilled engineers and makes implementation of ultrafast technology into demanding applications outside research laboratories almost impossible. MiniMods aims to address these short comings by developing miniaturised laser diagnostic tools and frequency conversion modules that are small enough to be integrated directly into the optical heads of ultrafast lasers and synchronously-pumped optical parametric oscillators. These modules will not only add direct readouts of key performance (e.g. pulse duration, spectrum, beam quality) and functionality but will also offer the ability to use adaptive control loops to control the laser performance parameters to unprecedented accuracy. This will negate the need for any user intervention when operating these systems, thereby making them suitable for a wide range of real world applications. While there are various ultrafast diagnostic tools on the market already, these are generally very expensive and bulky apparatus that dont lend themselves for integration into fully engineered systems. MiniMods will overcome this by exploiting a series of new technological concepts developed by the consortium to realise autocorrelators, beam quality detectors, spectrometers, compressors and third harmonic generators. In this context, cost effectiveness and a highly compact form are paramount factors to ensure that these systems can be utilized as a main stream component in future generations of ultrafast oscillators.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: NMP-2008-4.0-4 | Award Amount: 15.74M | Year: 2009

The LIFT project will establish international leadership for Europe in the science, application and production technologies for material processing by fibre lasers through the development of innovative laser sources. Major advances beyond the state of the art are planned: The cold-ablation fibre laser, based on ultra-short pulses, will open an entirely new market (100 mill. p.a.) for laser processing of ceramics. The extreme high-power fibre laser will enlarge the EUV lithography market (500 mill. p.a.) to include fibre lasers. The visible RGB fibre laser will produce the first high-brilliance source for laser projection displays (15 mill. p.a.). New future-oriented manufacturing tools based on higher-power pulsed fibre lasers (80 mill. p.a.). The high-reliability laser for large-scale manufacturing with High Speed Laser Remote Processing - means a new level of performance for 2kWatt materials-processing lasers with raised MTBF to 50.000 hours (accessible market 1 bill. p.a.). The Horizontal integration and networking in Europes high brilliance laser industry in this project will enable a greater market share for existing applications, create new areas of exploitation for manufacturing, and build a European network of component suppliers, laser manufacturers, universities and research institutes. As a result, LIFT will cause the following results to emerge: 1. Europe would take advantage of novel laser sources to be employed for various processing applications, many of which cannot even be treated by todays lasers. 2. European companies will benefit by the exploitation of the knowledge by the LIFT consortium in the field of fibre lasers, thus creating new markets and improving productivity in existing ones, thus building the competitiveness and the technological role of Europe; 3. The society as a whole would benefit from the results of LIFT, because in many sectors the further development of laser processing is crucial for the improvement of the quality

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