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Name: Russell
Status: Other
Age: 50s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: April 2003


Question:
Why is the efficiency of most all lasers limited to .1% to 30%? What are the limiting factors? What are some ways presently being researched to increase efficiency?



Replies:
The mechanism of lasers involves somehow exciting atoms/molecules into an excited state, and keeping them there while simultaneously irradiating them with a stimulating wavelength to cause them to de-excite simultaneously. This is just not a very efficient process. It requires a lot of energy input. I am sure research is on-going to make them more efficient, but it is not an easy engineering/physics/chemistry feat. That is not to say that efficiencies will not improve, but it is an up hill battle.

Vince Calder



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