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CLF News Archive
CLF News Archive
CLF news stories from 2014 or earlier
2016 Christmas Meeting of the High Power Laser User Community
Laserlab EU Training Weeks
The CLF is organising a dedicated EU event based on our annual Training Weeks which have been run in the CLF for 15 years. The two week course will be held between 21st November and 2nd December 2016.
Target Fabrication 3D printing capability
CLF Target Fabrication Group has now added a 3D printer to their laboratory. This will give the group the capability to design and fabricate model prototypes, target posts and coating supports on a much shorter timescale than previously possible.
It is with immense sadness that we tell you that Anne-Marie passed away on Sunday, 8th May after a long and brave battle with cancer.
2015 Christmas Meeting of the High Power Laser Community
The 2015 Christmas Meeting of the High Power Laser Community held at its new venue at the Amey Theatre of Abingdon School featured nearly 50 talks, and over 170 registered attendees
Journey through Europe: 1,000 miles later and ten million pound laser contract is complete
High-resolution laser x-rays could spot tiny fractures in bone
European researchers light the way towards top-level laser science and innovations
LASERLAB-EUROPE, the consortium of major European laser research organisations, has been successful in securing EC funding of 10 million euros in Horizon 2020.
Plasma-optics advance laser-driven ion acceleration
Results published in Physical Review Letters this month, obtained using CLF’s Gemini laser, demonstrate enhanced laser ion acceleration using a novel target design involving carbon nanotube foam.
Harwell Open Day success!
The Harwell Open Day on Saturday 11th July saw around 15,000 people visiting the site.
Cobalt Receives the 2015 Queens Award for Enterprise
Congratulations to CLF spinout Cobalt Light Systems, named as a recipient of the prestigious 2015 Queen’s Award for Enterprise. The award – in the category of International trade – is the UK’s highest accolade for business success
Precious art analysed without damage using new laser technique
Precious works of art in need of preservation or authentication could in future be studied using a new laser technique, developed by a collaboration of UK and Italian scientists, that can analyse layers of paint without causing any damage to the object it
Are the stars singing?
A chance discovery by a team of researchers from the CLF, York Plasma Institute and the Tata Institute in Mumbai has provided experimental evidence that stars may generate sound
Czech and UK laser facilities team up in new EU initiative
The CLF and the Czech Institute of Physics’ HiLASE facility have been awarded around €500,000 in the first phase of funding for a new Teaming initiative under the EU’s Horizon 2020 framework programme
STFCs Incredible Power of Light roadshow launches in Belfast
STFCs laser-themed exhibition roadshow begins its tour of the UK tonight with a week-long installation at Ulster Museum in Belfast, Northern Ireland as part of the Northern Ireland Science Festival.
New laser promises LIFEtime of biology breakthroughs thanks to big data computing
Article published in Science featuring results from CLFs Ultra system on using IR pulses to control chemistry
Results published in Science today report on the elementary reaction of electron transfer and how Ultra’s lasers have been used to direct the outcome of light-induced processes - those operating via charge transport, which is fundamental to almost all lig
Double PRL coverage for Gemini experiments into ultra-bright, ultra-short laser-driven photon sources
CLFs DiPOLE laser will be a leading light in European XFEL project
A leading-edge laser built by the Central Laser Facility (CLF) and Oxford University will play a key role in the billion-Euro XFEL facility that reveals matter’s deepest secrets using X-ray flashes a billion times brighter than normal X-rays.
Study of rickets in 16th century sailors could aid detection of the disease today
New laser technology investigates bones of sailors who perished on Henry VIII’s ship.
CLFs Vulcan laser reveals electron transport can be tuned in melting solids
Results published in Physical Review Letters demonstrate for the first time that divergence, spatial-intensity profile and symmetry of fast electron beams can be actively manipulated by tailoring temperature and resistivity gradients within the target usi
Artificial photosynthesis work gets front cover for Ultra
Experiments on Ultra on a new transition metal complex of possible importance for our understanding of artificial photosynthesis feature on the front cover of the journal Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics
£1M EPSRC award to develop new simulation code for the UK plasma physics community
A recent multi-institution collaboration has successfully been awarded £1M by EPSRC for the development of a 3D radiation-magnetohydrodynamics simulation code called “Odin”.
Closure of EPSRC Laser Loan Pool
The CLF regretfully informs its user community of the closure of the EPSRC Laser Loan Pool.
Landmark Nature paper featuring CLF work hits 1000 citation mark
A 2004 Nature article, featuring the work done on the Central Laser Facilitys (CLF) Astra laser by a team led by Imperial College, has crossed the coveted milestone of 1000 citations.
CALTA supplies extremely powerful laser for ELI
A cutting-edge laser amplifier that can supply bursts of laser energy with power equivalent to that of a full-sized power station has been developed, built and supplied for a new international project in the Czech Republic.
CLFs Ultra lasers help to understand how plastic solar panels work
A paper published in Nature Communications this week describes how the CLFs femtosecond Raman spectroscopy lasers have been used to reveal chemistry at work in plastic solar panels.
CLFs Vulcan laser used to mimic magnetic field amplification in supernova remnants
A group led by the University of Oxford have used the Vulcan laser to explore turbulent amplification of magnetic fields in laser-produced shocks, believed to be the reason behind synchrotron emission from the remnants of the supernova Cassiopeia A.
Lasers provide a new way to analyse priceless art without damage
CLF scientists, working on an international project to conserve precious works of art, have found a new way to analyse paintings without having to remove even a tiny speck of the paint to inspect the layers below.
PRL front cover for attosecond pulse generation study using CLFs Gemini laser
A paper featuring laser-driven coherent synchrotron emission work carried out on the CLF’s Gemini laser and recently published in the high impact journal Physical Review Letters has been chosen as the issue’s front cover feature.
CLFs Gemini laser delivers its 100,000th full power shot
The world’s first dual beam Petawatt-class laser system, Gemini, has reached an impressive milestone in delivering its 100,000th full power laser shot during the latest experimental campaign.
Target area timelapse: Vulcan Petawatt
Ever wondered how Vulcan’s metre-scale high vacuum gate-valves are kept in tip-top condition? This timelapse video captures the large scale effort required to carry out this particular maintenance in Vulcan’s Target Area Petawatt (TAP).
CLF awarded 1.5 million BBSRC funding
Two grants announced today by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) totalling £1.5 million have been awarded to the Central Laser Facilitys ULTRA and OCTOPUS facilities, situated in the Research Complex at Harwell.
CLF supplies targets to first academic access experiment on the Orion laser
CLF’s target fabrication group have delivered a suite of targets to the first academic access experiment at AWE’s Orion laser facility, in order to carry out high-energy density laboratory astrophysics studies.
Shining a light on protein dynamics says Journal of the American Chemical Society
The CLFs recently developed TRMPS (time-resolved multiple probe spectroscopy) system has been used to study the underlying structural dynamics of the protein domain responsible for organisms that move towards a source of light.
Calibrating [optical micro-] cavities
CLF’s laser tweezers have been used to levitate polymer micro spheres while their refractive index is determined against wavelength and radius; a crucial step in being able to fully calibrate instruments that are used to size atmospheric aerosol droplets.
Shaping laser-accelerated beams of electrons as they travel through solid targets
Research carried out using the CLF’s Vulcan petawatt laser into the generation of magnetic fields inside solid targets and how they shape laser-accelerated electron beams has been published today in Physical Review Letters.
CLF laser tweezers and ISIS neutrons revealing chemistry of a cloud
A group from Royal Holloway are combining results from experiments carried out at both the CLF and the ISIS neutron source to understand cloud dynamics and how this impacts on the climate.
Boosting the efficiency of laser particle acceleration
Numerical work carried out at the CLF and published in a PRL article this week, describes how the energy of electrons can be boosted beyond what is possible with the direct laser acceleration process alone.
CLFs laser tweezers to lead to faster breakthroughs in biological research
Gemini laser shows that Einsteins flying mirror thought-experiment is the real deal
Experimental results obtained using the Gemini laser are the first to demonstrate that laser light reflected from an ultrathin foil mirror moving close to the speed of light can be upshifted in energy, a demonstration of one of Einstein’s special relativi
CLF science featured on cover of Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics
Results obtained using the CLFs Ultra facility reveal molecules in motion and appear on the cover of Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics.
Cobalts bottled liquid screener is elevated to the highest performance level
CLF’s spinout company Cobalt Light Systems has achieved the highest level of certification for its bottled liquid screener Insight100 for European airports.
CLF wins major contract to develop new laser technologies
CLF secures £10m HiLASE contract to develop new laser technologies for use by business and science.
Laser based breast cancer diagnosis technique to be tested on human breast tissue for the first time
A technique developed at the CLF that could take away the anxious wait by patients for breast cancer results by removing the need for a needle biopsy is to have its performance evaluated for the first time, on breast tissue and lymph nodes.
CLF collaboration receives 1.7M to fill major gaps in our understanding of human diseases
A new UK endeavour that will focus on gaining a much better understanding of major human diseases, like cancer and other medical concerns such as deafness and ageing, is to be undertaken by an CLF-MRC consortium, thanks to a £1.7M grant from the Medical R
Artificial photosynthesis research featured on journal front cover
Inorganic Chemistry Journal has chosen an article featuring results obtained on the CLF’s advanced laser spectroscopy facility, ULTRA, for the front cover of one of its latest issues.
Super-resolution imaging down to 50 nm now available on the CLFs OCTOPUS imaging facility
The latest addition to the CLF’s OCTOPUS imaging facility is a super-resolution microscopy station, capable of achieving 50 nm resolution in 2D.
Faster Analysis Times for Pharma Raw Materials
CLF spinout Cobalt Light Systems is proud to announce RapID, a pioneering instrument for the identification of raw materials through the side of the unopened packaging...
Double PRL coverage for Vulcan Petawatt in double-pulse mode
First major Extreme Light Infrastructure contract placed with STFCs new laser centre
The Extreme Light Infrastructure (ELI) project in the Czech Republic has awarded its first major contract to STFC’s new Centre for Advanced Laser Technology and Applications (CALTA)
New Insight Gained into How Plants May Fight Diseases
Cobalt Light Systems raises 2 million in closed round
Cobalt Light Systems is pleased to announce today that it has successfully closed a £2.0 million round from existing investors...
Results From ULTRA Make Editors Choice
A study of the dynamics involved in the real-time formation of bonds in the solution phase has been highlighted as ground-breaking research by the editors of the Journal of Chemical Physics....
Magnetic switchyard could enable Fast Ignition by Focusing Relativistic Electron Beams
Specially engineered layered laser targets could enable the ‘fast ignition’ of inertial confinement fusion by guiding and focusing electron beams with magnetic fields...
Why soot could be the key to delivering drugs to cancer cells
Nano-scale tubes made of carbon could be used to safely penetrate human cells and deliver anti-cancer medicines or modified DNA molecules for gene therapy...
Laser first, helps solve the puzzle of how the Universe got its magnetism
Scientists have demonstrated for the very first time how a laser can be used to stimulate the formation of magnetic fields, similar to those thought to be involved in the formation of the very first galaxies...
New scanner allows liquids back into aircraft cabin baggage
Boosted X-rays set to advance medical and security scans
A breakthrough at STFCs Rutherford Appleton Laboratory is set to revolutionise X-ray imaging. With potential applications ranging from novel medical imaging to security screening, physicists have found a way to produce a bright, high energy X-ray source,
Successful test for 10PW pump laser and Vulcan
The 10PW pump laser and the Vulcan system will require rectangular, glue-clad laser slabs for use in the 208 amplifiers in the future, as elliptical, monolithically-clad discs are no longer available.
Effects of crystal structure on energetic electron transport
Under strong thermal excitation conditions it is possible to create transient, highly non-equilibrium states of matter.
Raman imaging goes deeper
A team comprising researchers from the Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, Strathclyde University and CLF have developed a new technique, SESORS, for non-invasive spectroscopy of translucent samples.....
Octopus provides cancer breakthrough
Experts from STFCs Central Laser Facility (CLF) and Computational Science and Engineering Department (CSED) have solved a puzzle that has confounded scientists for more than 30 years
Sugar boost for scientists planning ahead for future medicines
Scientists continuing to investigate a 50 year mystery have discovered another vital clue that could help pave the way for improved medicines...
Double dose of laser results could lead to improved medicines
New microscopic techniques help to develop improved chicken vaccines
New technology offers prospect of better bone disease diagnosis
Smaller and cheaper but 300 times more intense
Scientists and supercomputers prove theory which could revolutionise laser
Dual beam success for Astra Gemini
The CLFs Astra Gemini laser facility achieved a major milestone last month by successfully turning on its second beamline, making it the only facility in the world with two synchronised Petawatt beamlines.
Target Fabrication ISO9001:2008 Certification
The Target Fabrication Group in the Central Laser Facility has been approved by Lloyd’s Register Quality Assurance to the ISO9001:2008 Quality Management System Standards....
Nanospoke Target Production
Laser Loan Pool
The EPSRC Laser Loan Pool was established in 1985 and ran until 2015.
STFC Press Release: New UK company rises to laser target challenge to enable pioneering research
A company which combines unique expertise in micro engineering and design to make ultra-precise parts for laser experiments is being launched today, 26 January 2010.
STFC Press Release: Application of innovative laser research could lead to earlier bone disorder diagnosis
A new laser technique that could lead to bone disorders being diagnosed earlier is to be tested in a hospital for the first time.