White Paper

White Paper: True Continuous-Wave Ultraviolet (355 nm) Lasers For Life Sciences

Source: Coherent, Inc.

OPSL (Optically-Pumped Semiconductor Laser) technology now provides the ideal combination of output power, operational simplicity and compact reliability for ultraviolet applications such as flow cytometry and confocal microscopy.

Introduction and Overview
A growing number of Life Sciences applications require fluorescence excitation by an ultraviolet laser source. Standout examples are flow cytometry for embryo selection and some emerging applications in confocal microscopy. Historically, continuous wave (CW) ultraviolet output was only available from bulky, power hungry gas lasers. More recently, a number of CW UV applications, both biomedical and non-biomedical, have utilized a new generation of mode-locked solid state lasers with output at 355 nm. However, these pseudo-CW lasers are not always an optimum solution for Life Sciences applications because their high peak power can damage live cells. In response to this situation, Coherent has developed a true-CW ultraviolet laser, based on the company's field-proven optically pumped semiconductor laser (OPSL) technology, which produces up to 150 milliwatts at 355 nm. This whitepaper examines how and why this laser provides unique advantages for Life Sciences applications.

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