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Ultrafast Lasers and Ultrafast Science

Jim Kafka Spectra Physics

Friday, October 12, 2012
2:00 p.m.–3:00 p.m.
Special FRIDAY Seminar Goergen 109

Abstract:
Ultrafast lasers have been used extensively in basic research. For example, these sources were instrumental in the work of the Nobel Prize winner in Chemistry for 1999. Ultrafast sources have found increasing use in commercial applications as well. I will review the basic components of an ultrafast laser system and describe how ultrafast pulses are generated. I will then present several commercial applications for ultrafast pulses including micro-machining and confocal microscopy.

Short Bio:
Jim Kafka received the B.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the Institute of Optics at the University of Rochester in 1977 and 1983, respectively. For the last 29 years, he has been developing new products and is currently the Advanced R & D Director for Spectra-Physics, a division of Newport Corporation. In addition to authoring numerous journal articles, conference presentations and seminars, he co-authored a book chapter on Ultrafast Nonlinear Optics and holds more than 35 patents. Jim was the principal designer on three products, the Tsunami, the Opal and the Millennia X, which have won technology achievement awards. He has served the optics community as the Ultrafast Phenomena topical editor for JOSA B, the co-chair for both the CLEO and ASSP conferences and is currently on the Board of Directors of the Optical Society of America. Jim is quite pleased to serve as a Distinguished Traveling Lecturer for the Division of Laser Science of the APS and to be a Fellow of the OSA.