Lithuania in the News
19th October 2014
A Lithuanian High Tech Company to Jointly Manufacture the World's Most Powerful Laser
Kęstutis Jasiūnas, General Manager of Ekspla, demonstrating Ekspla's
facilities to President Dalia Grybauskaitė. Photo courtesy
Lithuania has an outstanding world class reputation for laser manufacturing. This has again been demonstrated by the Lithuanian laser manufacturer Ekspla, jointly with the American company National Energetics, winning the contract to manufacture the world's most powerful laser in its class. The joint tender is worth more than USD 40 million and will produce a massive laser which will generate a peak power of 10 petawatt (PW). (1 PW = one quadrillion (1015 ) watts, or a million x million times 1 kW). Sub-contractors to the project will be the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (USA) and the German company Schott.
Ekspla has an established international reputation in the manufacture of lasers for scientific research and has captured more than half of the world’s market in scientific picosecond lasers, including to Australia. (One picosecond (ps) =10-12 seconds, i.e. one million millionth of a second). The new laser will generate an impulse of more than 1.5 kJ energy within an extremely short sub-picosecond pulse duration of 150 femtoseconds (fs) (1 fs = 1/1000 ps), with a pulse repetition rate of one pulse per minute. It will use optical parametric chirped pulse compression and subsequent high-energy amplification in glass-disc amplifiers. The peak power achieved will be a remarkable 20 times greater than has been achieved to date. Kęstutis Jasiūnas, General Manager of Ekspla, declared: "It is a truly extraordinary feeling to participate in the development of a laser system whose power is ten times greater than current records."
The new laser will be deployed in one of the four EU Extreme Light Infrastructure (ELI) research facilities, namely the ELI-Beamlines laser systems facility located near Prague in the Czech Republic. It will be available to researchers throughout Europe and the world and will become a unique and exceptionally powerful research tool. Its research scope will include many aspects of ultra high energy physics.

More information:
On this website: Lithuania in the News, 6th February 2011 - "Lithuanian Laser Wins Prestigious Award for World’s Best Scientific Laser"