There is lots of research around the globe that focuses on lasers and their application. The laser is being investigated for all sorts of uses, including weapons. Some of the research that involves lasers aims to recreate conditions of all sorts that involve high temperatures and exotic matter.
Clearly the times have gotten as strange and terrifying as they're going to get over in the UK and police forces are testing laser rifles that are capable of firing a three meter "wall of light" that temporarily blind anyone who glances upon it. While this may bring up images in your mind of everything from your favorite first person shooter to Magic: The Gathering cards, you should know that this is being reported to be completely non-lethal. This weapon will cost £25,000 per unit and was designed by a former Royal Marine Commando who intended it for use against Somalian pirates. The image you see below this paragraph is not an accurate representation of what the rifle will look like, but a rendering of it's current iteration IS inside this post a bit lower down.
The speed of the camera sensor is virtually unfathomable to my mind. MIT has created a new imaging solution that is capable of taking photos at a trillion frames per second. That number is mind boggling and very hard to comprehend until MIT puts that enormous speed into perspective. The photographic system shoots so fast that it can actually visualize the propagation of light.
RED looks set to show off its much-rumored 4K laser projector in its first public demo, with the camera company's RED Studios Hollywood running a demo reel on the new kit for a military-themed "RED Ops Night." Described as an event "to educate and expose the most cutting edge Red technology to military personnel involved in all areas of media and public relations" the show takes place in Los Angeles tonight.
Should Dr. Evil ever have the need for an implanted medical device like a pacemaker, pain med pump, or insulin pump he will love this. Researchers looking into batteries that last longer for these implanted devices have hit on a discovery that may allow the devices to harvest power from a laser. This would allow the recharging of the medical device battery without having to cut the person open and place a new battery into the device.
If there's one criticism we've always had about laser pointers it's that only one person can run the risk of blindness at a time; thank goodness for tinkerer Matthew Leone's DIY Laser Ball project, which opens the door to up to 14 lasers. Leone's awesome Instructable packs a tennis ball with lasers and a microcontroller to create what's described as "a cat-toy for humans" or a remote control "first-generation lightsaber training droid."
RED is best known for its super-high-resolution cameras, capable of making both eyes and wallets weep, but the company has revealed it now has a home 4K projector in the pipeline. Arch teasemeister (and RED CEO) Jim Jannard took to the company's forums to share the glowing first-impressions from Element Technica co-founder Stephen Pizzo experience with RED's new laser projector, subsequently confirming that "this [projector] is on our roadmap."
BMW was among the first carmakers out there to start using LED lights for headlights and other lights. The LEDs are great because they use less power and they are able to last much longer than your typical automotive lighting. BMW is working on what it calls the next logical step in automotive lighting with laser lighting. The lights are expected to come to market within a few years.
The last time I mentioned Wicked Lasers was back when it was in legal trouble with LucasFilm for making a new laser that looked a lot like a lightsaber. Wicked Lasers is back with another cool laser called the S3 Krypton Series. This laser claims to be the world's brightest handheld laser with a range of 85-miles! That means that the laser is bright enough to be seen outside our atmosphere.
The next time Dr. Evil makes a rap video this is the guitar that they need to use. It has lasers after all and it appears to have a bad attitude as well. The laser system is called the Laser Pitch Detection Pickup. The system can detect the pitch of a string before the player even plucks the guitar strings. The goal is to reduce the latency when recording a stringed instrument.