The laser is a versatile tool in the modern technological arsenal. It can provide immense energy to a precise location at a very specific wavelength, but it's always fallen short in one regard: lasers emit light at a single specific wavelength. Until now.
A team from Arizona State University has built a white laser that simultaneously fires in red, green and blue, covering more than 90 percent of the colors perceptible to the human eye.
The laser is modulated by a synthetic nanosheet, a multi-segmented, layered material that can emit in red, green, and blue light in different proportions, based on the light applied to each segment. The wavelength spans 191 nanometers, which the study claims is the largest reported for a laser of this kind. Researchers "grew" the material, alloyed from zinc, calcium, sulfur, and selenium, in a 4-foot tube that reached more than 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit.