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Updated 2:00 PM EDT, Wed, May 20, 2020

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Scientists Develop Random Raman Laser to Reveal Microscopic Life

random Raman laser

(Photo : Research Group Materials for Microelectronic Applications / TU Bergakademie Freiberg) Scientists demonstrated how a narrow-band strobe light source for speckle-free imaging has the potential to reveal microscopic forms of life.

Scientists have developed a “random Raman laser”, which can be a promising application in a high-speed wide-field microscopy that can have a big potential in revealing secrets of the unseen world.

Microscopic imaging techniques use lasers as light sources because of their ability to deliver pulses of intense radiation to a target that allows ultra-fast image acquisition. The said technique also has disadvantages as it produces images that are blurred by speckled patterns.

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Speckles happen because of a property of conventional lasers called “high spatial coherence”. Researchers used a laser-like light source that has a “low spatial coherence” to make a remedy for this.

The remedy just want to show a new light source that would have electric fields at different positions in the light beans and do not oscillate in the lockstep as what they usually do in a traditional lasers. The random Raman lasing emission does offer a bright, speckle-free, strobe light source.

“We found that random Raman lasing emission has a low level of spatial coherence. The emission can be used to produce a wide-field speckle-free quality image with a strobe time on the order of a nanosecond. This new, bright, fast, narrowband, low-coherence light source opens the door to many exciting new applications in bio-imaging such as high-speed, wide-field microscopy,” said Brett Hokr, a physicist at Texas A&M University and the lead author of the research.

The new technique does cause a diffuse material such as powder in order to emit laser light and is different from conventional last that bounce photons back and forth in a laser cavity.

In the final approach, researchers test the effectiveness of the technique and was able to produce a “full-frame, speckle-free microscopic image” that show the formation of a cavitations bubble from a melanosomes.

Details of the study appeared in the journal Optical Society.

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