Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Laser Optics and Instrumentation
Laser, Optics, and Instrumentation Laboratory of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department was established in Fall 2000. Here the current technologies in continuous wave and short-pulse lasers, and optics are exploited to develop new techniques for the measurement and characterization of material properties. Faculty and graduate students are involved in analyzing interaction of short pulse and continuous wave lasers with different materials for various applications. Biomedical applications focuses on the goal to detect and irradiate tumors and inhomogeneities in tissues; material characterization/processing applications involve detection of defects in materials such as debonding in thermal protection tile systems and thermal response of materials subjected to high-energy radiation; remote sensing applications focuses on lightning detection in cloud media and landmines in shallow waters. Also research in the area of use of nanobiosensors for cellular interrogation for low intensity laser therapy applications is also conducted. Lasers hold tremendous potentials in all of the above-mentioned application areas. Integration of laser sources, system optics, instrumentation, measurement scheme, and data acquisition is a challenging task and the goal is to provide the students a learning experience in these areas. Currently available equipment include: mode-locked short-pulse laser, high power continuous wave lasers, modulator, ultrafast photodetector, sampling head oscilloscope, digital camera, miscellaneous optics and optical accessories, high speed resolution streak camera, thermal camera, and image processing system.