Focus |

Materials processing

The laser has proven to be a valuable tool in many forms of materials processing ranging from cutting and welding to sintering and peening.


Accountability of coauthors for scientific misconduct, guest authorship and deliberate or negligent citation plagiarism, highlight the need for accurate author contribution statements.

Editorial | | Nature Photonics


Swiss company Synova is commercializing an innovative materials processing technique that uses a water-guided laser beam to allow 'cold laser cutting'. Nadya Anscombe talks to the company's chief technical advisor, Alexandre Pauchard, to find out more.

Interview | | Nature Photonics

A prototype display technology that electromechanically transports colourful aqueous dispersed pigments over the surface of mirror-like pixels is a promising new approach to making electronic paper with high reflectivity and contrast. Nature Photonics spoke to Jason Heikenfeld to learn more.

Interview | | Nature Photonics


Whether the electromagnetic fields in random lasers are localized or extended is a topic of ongoing debate. Now, the localization of modes in micro-structured ZnO powder is experimentally determined and lasing from both kinds of modes (localized and extended) shown to exist simultaneously.

Letter | | Nature Photonics





New optical technologies have revolutionized astronomy, from the invention of the telescope 400 years ago to more recent developments of adaptive optics and segmented mirrors. The next disruptive technologies could well emerge from integrated photonic devices.

Commentary | | Nature Photonics

Research Highlights

News and Views

Researchers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory have generated billions of positrons, forming the highest antimatter densities ever created on earth, by using superintense short laser pulses.

News & Views | | Nature Photonics

Random lasers can be made simply by grinding a laser crystal and optically pumping the resulting powder. The physics behind the resulting laser emission is rich but has led to much controversy. New experiments may now settle the debate behind their operation.

News & Views | | Nature Photonics

Pigmented inks in a microfluidic structure provide a new approach for fabricating bright, colourful electronic paper with a reflectivity of greater than 50%. The challenge now is to combine the scheme with fully functioning drive electronics.

News & Views | | Nature Photonics

The construction of a polymer solar cell that can successfully collect an electron and hole for almost every incident photon suggests that great improvements in the efficiency of organic photovoltaics should be possible.

News & Views | | Nature Photonics

Business News


Laser systems manufacturer Trumpf believes it can survive in the current economic climate with its strategy of diversification in both the laser technologies it is able to offer clients and the wide range of end-user applications that it serves. Nadya Anscombe finds out more.

Profile | | Nature Photonics

Industry Perspectives

With its intense power and flexibility, the laser has revolutionized sintering technology and made possible the rapid manufacture of prototypes and components from electronic data.

Industry Perspective | | Nature Photonics

Laser shock peening is a surface treatment process for increasing the strength and reliability of metal components. Traditionally applied to aircraft parts, the technology also shows great potential for automotive and medical applications.

Industry Perspective | | Nature Photonics

Laser welding of plastics is now a convenient and flexible technique that is proving popular for joining automotive parts and medical equipment as well as consumer products.

Industry Perspective | | Nature Photonics

Product Highlights