Breakthrough Brings Laser Light to New Regions of the Spectrum

Combining concepts from electromagnetic radiation research and fiber optics, researchers have created an extreme-ultraviolet, laser-like beam capable of producing tightly-focused light in a region of the electromagnetic spectrum not previously accessible to scientists. Between 10-100 times shorter than visible light waves, the extreme-ultraviolet (EUV) wavelengths will allow researchers to “see” tiny features and carve miniature patterns, with applications in such fields as microscopy, lithography and nanotechnology. The achievement is based on a new structure called a “waveguide,” a hollow glass tube with internal humps that coax light waves into traveling along at the same speed and help the waves reinforce each other.