Strathclyde University acquires one the world's most powerful lasers from Thales

One of the world’s most powerful lasers – designed and built by Thales – capable of bursts of light equivalent to twenty times all the power consumed on Earth in fraction of a second – has been acquired by the University of Strathclyde.

Dr Gregor Welsh, a Research Fellow in Strathclyde’s Department of Physics and Laser Manager of SCAPA, said: “This is a world-leading laser for any university – indeed, we believe it is the highest average powered lab-based laser of its type anywhere in the world. It acts as a light source which drives the applications and produces x-ray pulses that are short enough to take snapshots of molecular or solid state processes.

The laser has numerous scientific applications including medical imaging, radiotherapy and generation of radioisotopes for imaging and cancer therapy. It has been installed by Thales at the Strathclyde-based Scottish Centre for the Application of Plasma-based Accelerators (SCAPA), which delivers research into next-generation accelerators and radiation technology.