Solid-State Lasers
for Science, Industry, Space and Defence

For more than 30 years, Thales has been a world leader in design, development and manufacturing of high energy nanosecond lasers and high intensity, ultra-short Ti:Sa femtosecond lasers.
Beyond the exceptional technical performances, THALES development trend is to provide the most reliable and easy-to-use system.
Thales proposes a wide range of lasers solutions for the most demanding applications:
  • Nd:YAG, Nd:YLF and Glass Phosphate Nanosecond Lasers.
  • Custom or standard Ti:Sa Femtosecond Systems (high peak power and high average power)


Scientific News

Beginning of 2016, Thales has won a contract for the delivery of a 2 x 100TW laser system to the Weizmann Institute of  Science, the Israeli multidisciplinary institute of  fundamental research.
Thales laser system will allow research teams to study the applications of intense laser in the following areas:
  • Laser plasma interaction in the relativistic regime with the development of compact accelerators for producing energetic particle and radiation beams
  • Medical with the treatment of cancers or the medical imaging with advanced laser based accelerators
On the picture, you can see the institute’s conventional  linear accelerator, no longer in use, underneath which Thales’ laser system will be located and used to propose more compact particle accelerator solutions.
For more information, you can consult the dedicated webpage on the Weizmann institute’s site.

In 2016, the laser activity of the Group won a contract in China for the delivery of a 200TW system.
The laser system is intended for South West Jiaotong University in Chengdu.
A research group made up of members of the institute of High Temperature and High Pressure Physics purchased the laser that is meant to be used for scientific and fundamental research. The work will study the dynamic response of condensed material when it is subject to rapid compression.

Thales wins a laser contract with the University of Munich for a 3PW amplifier

Thales has been chosen by the University of Munich to supply the final amplification stage for ATLAS 3000.
The ATLAS 3000 system, developed by the Centre for Advanced Laser Applications (CALA)* in Munich, is a high-intensity laser system rated at 3 PetaWatts. ATLAS 3000 comprises three sections:
  • a front end, with an initial amplification stage,
  • a second amplification subassembly, supplied by Thales,
  • and a compressor.
As part of this two-year programme, Thales is responsible for the advanced research and engineering phases and subsequent installation at the CALA facility in Garching, just north of Munich.
The ATLAS 3000 experimentation system will be used for particle acceleration to support medical research into the diagnosis and treatment of cancers.
*Joint research facility operated by Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Technical University of Munich and the Max Planck Institute in Garching.

Spatial News

Thales has been awarded the title of Laser of the Future by the French National Space Agency (Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales – CNES) whereby Thales will develop a laser for the SUPERCAM instrument intended for the 2020 mission to Mars.
Relying on the success of the CHEMCAM programme, Thales’s SUPERCAM, an improved laser allowing an additional spectroscopic function - called RAMAN spectroscopy, has been selected by the CNES for a 2 year program that started in May 2015 after a 5 month development phase.
Thales’s work with CNES, developing SUPERCAM, an instrument used for matter analysis, uses the Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) principle: whereby a high power laser heats the matter into vapour. A spectroscopic camera then identifies each chemical component.
With a record of 300,000 shots, CHEMCAM is a real success !
The Thales CHEMCAM Laser, is currently in operation on Mars onboard the Curiosity Rover. More than just scientific equipment, CHEMCAM acts as an eye for Curiosity allowing the rover to choose the right direction.
NASA's Mars Curiosity rover had completed a Martian year - 687 Earth days - on June 24 2014. The mission met its main goal of determining whether the Martian Gale Crater ever was habitable for simple life forms. The answer, a historic "yes", came from two mudstone slabs that the rover sampled with its drill. Simply stated, thanks to its Thales spatial laser, ChemCam is telling us what the rocks that Curiosity has encountered since landing are made of. The primary objectives of ChemCam are to rapidly analyze rocks and soil to determine their compositions and to identify samples that would be of greatest interest to scientists for analysis by other instruments onboard Curiosity.

Industrial News

The GAIA-I pushes forward the limits of output energy reachable at high repetition rates with high reliability, and unprecedented pulse stability.
GAIA-I combines the best characteristics for many industrial applications: pulse duration and high energy to offer high intensity pulses, very low modulations to have uniform stress, a high repetition rate for a faster process, unprecedented energy and beam pointing stability.


  • R&D Activity and Large programs
    As a key player on the Scientific Laser Marketplace, Thales has a large R&D activity to constantly release innovative solutions on the markets.
  • Industry Applications
  • Science Applications


SPIE Photonics West

The Laser, Photonics, Biomedical Optics Conference

16th-18th February 2016, San Francisco, USA


Laser World Of Photonics

15th - 17th March 2016, Shanghai, CHINA


OPIC 2016

18th - 20th May 2016, Yokohama, JAPAN



Technology and services fair

14th - 15th September 2016, Paris, FRANCE



The International Committee on Ultra-High Intensity Lasers

11th-16th September 2016, Montebello, CANADA





Some References


Scientific market

  • University of Munich, GERMANY
  • South West Jiao Tong, CHINA
  • Weizmann Institute, ISRAEL
  • IFIN-HH (Horia Hulubei National Institute of Physics and Nuclear Engineering), ROMANIA
  • Riken Harima/Osaka University, JAPAN
  • Peking University, CHINA
  • LBNL (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory), USA
  • DESY (Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron), GERMANY
  • INFLPR (National Institute for Laser, Plasma and Radiation Physics), ROMANIA
  • GIST (Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology), KOREA
  • IPCMS (Institut de Physique et Chimie des Matériaux de Strasbourg), FRANCE
  • Tsinghua University, CHINA
  • University of Nebraska-Lincoln, USA
  • INRS (Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique), CANADA
  • SLAC (Stanford Linear Accelerator Center), USA
  • Government of India, INDIA
  • Tokyo University, JAPAN
  • CEA (Commissariat à l’Energie Atomique), FRANCE
  • CNRS (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique), FRANCE
  • LOA (Laboratoire d’Optique Appliquée), FRANCE
  • JAEA (Japan Atomic Energy Association), JAPAN

Industrial market

  • The  GAIA I laser, delivering more than 8 J at 532  nm at 5 Hz , is the new generation of high energy Nd:YAG laser  ruggedized for industrial applications
  • THALES lasers are also used in many industrial fields, such as: semiconductor, OLED Manufacturing, photovoltaics industries, automotive, aeronautics, ... 

Defence and Space organizations

  • DRDC (Defence Research and Development Canada), CANADA
  • DGA (Direction Generale de l’Armement), FRANCE
  • DLR (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft und Raumfahrt German Aerospace Center), GERMANY
  • CNES (Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales), FRANCE


Thales is proud to mention that the Bella project won 2 world-class awards in 2012 and 2013 and that its laser activity was recognized as the most innovative technology within the group in 2014.

« 2012 Engineer of the year Award » (L’Usine Nouvelle and Industrie Technologie)

« Prix pour la science” for the Bella laser - “Science award” for the Bella laser

December 2012, Paris, France

Every year, "Usine Nouvelle » and « Industrie et Technologies" organises “the Engineer of the year Award” to honour outstanding engineers.

IPMA Project Excellence Award (27th IPMA World Congress)

Gold Winner in Award Category Project Excellence in Big-Sized Projects

October 2013, Dubrovnick, Croatia

IPMA Awards ensures managing project is recognized for its value.

Thales Innovation Awards (Thales group competition)

Gold Award in the Innovative Technologies category for the PetaWatt laser solutions

June 2014, Jouy en Josas, France

Every year, Thales recognizes the best innovations of the year through the Thales Innovation Awards.

Thales Optronics SA
+33 (0) 1 30 96 89 45
  • Documents
    20 Jan 2015

    Atlas - Flashlamp-pumped Glass Phosphate Series

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    21 Jul 2016

    Gaia HP - Flashlamp-pumped Nd:YAG Series

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    Alpha 5/XS 200 TW - Ultrafast Ti:Sa Series

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    ALPHA 45 TW A4 ENG 052015

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    Alpha kHz - Ultrafast Ti:Sa Series

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    ALPHA PW A4 ENG 052015

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    16 Jul 2015

    Jade 2 - Diode-Pumped Compact Series

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