News Briefing on Laser Research Marks the 50th Anniversary of the Laser at 2010 AAAS Annual Meeting


*** Media Alert ***

News Briefing on Laser Research Marks the 50th Anniversary of the Laser at 2010 AAAS Annual Meeting

Please join us for a press briefing on the Future of Laser Technology at the 2010 Annual Meeting of the American Association for Advancement of Science (AAAS) in San Diego.  The media event takes place Sunday, Feb. 21 at 12 p.m. and will address the latest research and next generation of laser uses, innovative optical techniques, and new applications. The event is being held as part of LaserFest, a year-long celebration of the 50th anniversary of the first working laser, and is sponsored by the Optical Society (OSA).

“This year we are celebrating the 50th birthday of the laser, one of the greatest inventions and most ubiquitous devices of modern-day life,” said Thomas Baer, member of the LaserFest Technical Advisory Committee and moderator of the news briefing at the world’s largest interdisciplinary science forum.  “We are honored to be invited by AAAS to look ahead at the remarkable advances in lasers still being made today, which are opening up new exciting frontiers in many areas of science.”

Please mark your calendar for this highly anticipated event, which will feature presentations from renowned scientists, a question and answer session, and follow-up one-on-one interviews.

WHAT: Press-only luncheon briefing on the Future of Laser Technology
Topics to be covered include Lasers at the Extreme and Next Generation of Extreme Optical Tools and Applications  
WHEN: Sunday, Feb. 21, 12 to 1 p.m. – Lunch will be provided to registered media
WHERE: 2010 AAAS Annual Meeting, Room 14A, Mezzanine Level, San Diego Convention Center
WHY: The scientific impact of lasers has been enormous. Responsible for the flow of information and telecommunications, lasers affect nearly every aspect of daily existence. With advancements in laser light at the extremes of intensity, photon energy, pulse duration, wavelength, brightness, power and quality, the usefulness of light to probe fundamental properties of the universe and states of matter on Earth continues to increase. Scientists will discuss state-of-the-art experiments to create “ultra-hot” star power in the laboratory; the next generation of measurement tools and techniques; and optical probing of the weakest of the forces, gravity.

Thomas M. Baer, Stanford Photonics Research Center, Calif., moderator

William D. Phillips, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Md.
Laser Cooling and Trapping: Making the Coldest Stuff in the Universe

Edward Moses, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Calif.
National Ignition Facility: Creating Star Power in the Laboratory

Margaret Murnane, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colo.
Attosecond Light and Science at the Time-Scale of Electron Motion

Christopher Barty, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Calif.
Revolutionizing Isotope Science and Applications with Laser-Like Gamma Rays

For More Information: On behalf of OSA and LaserFest, please contact Nadine Tosk at 847.920.9858,; or Angela Stark at 202.416.1443;

About LaserFest
LaserFest, a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the laser, emphasizes the laser's impact throughout history and highlights its potential for the future. Through a series of events and programs, LaserFest showcases the prominence of the laser in today's world. For more information, visit

About OSA
Uniting more than 106,000 professionals from 134 countries, the Optical Society (OSA) brings together the global optics community through its programs and initiatives. Since 1916 OSA has worked to advance the common interests of the field, providing educational resources to the scientists, engineers and business leaders who work in the field by promoting the science of light and the advanced technologies made possible by optics and photonics. OSA publications, events, technical groups and programs foster optics knowledge and scientific collaboration among all those with an interest in optics and photonics. For more information, visit