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Taiwan, Lithuania jointly develop thin-disk laser

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Taiwanese and Lithuanian researchers have jointly developed a high-power thin-disk laser (TDL), a milestone that would aid laser development in both countries, National Sun Yat-sen University said yesterday.

The development could also improve Taiwan’s crystalline material production, as well as its laser refining and development capabilities, the university said.

The breakthrough attracted a visit by Lithuanian Laser Association head Gediminas Raciukaitis, who was part of a delegation that traveled to Taiwan earlier this month with Lithuania’s first representative to Taiwan, Paulius Lukauskas.

During the visit, Raciukaitis participated in a demonstration of the TDL, which helped to further Taiwan-Lithuanian collaborations in the field, the university said.

Raciukaitis also toured the university’s optical angular momentum program, led by Department of Materials and Optoelectronic Science professor Lin Yuan-yao (林元堯), and College of Engineering associate dean Chiu Yi-jen’s (邱逸仁) “high-speed silicon photonics and integrated photonics in the semiconductor industry” program.

Lithuania is known for its laser industry and applied uses of laser technology. Raciukaitis’ visit, as well as his suggestions regarding coating and bonding methods, and heat dissipation for the TDL, were greatly appreciated, the university said.

National Sun Yat-sen University materials and optoelectronic science professor Mitch Chou (周明奇) said the TDL is a significant development in high-powered lasers.

Its small size helps with heat dissipation, greatly expanding the applications it can be used for, and its technological threshold is relatively high, Chou said.

The university and Lithuania’s Center for Physical Sciences and Technology earlier this year established the Taiwan and Lithuania Center for Semiconductor and Materials Science. The new center was developing a laser gain medium that would be considerably smaller than the laser beam diameter.

The university has signed deals with three top Lithuanian universities, including the University of Vilnius, and is currently the only university in Taiwan participating in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ “Taiwan-Lithuania Semiconductor Talent and Research Scholarship Fund” program.

Six students are studying in Lithuania as part of the program this year, with four Lithuanian students coming to Taiwan, it said.

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