What Is A Blue Light Laser

Home AV setup with PS3, which utilizes blue laser technology.

Blue lasers are a relatively new technology, from which we have only just begun to reap the benefits. The newness of the technology explains why most of the current technology using it, as of 2009, is still fairly expensive. Does this Spark an idea?

What Is a Laser?

A laser is a coherent focused beam of light that is comprised of a specific wavelength of light, which is how it gets its color. Most blue lasers emit light between the wavelengths of 360nm and 480nm.

Birth of the Inexpensive Blue Laser

Blue lasers existed for some time in laboratories but were power-hungry and difficult to operate, needing ample cooling. It was not until the mid-1990s that Shuji Nakamura invented the first semiconductor-based blue laser.

Makeup of a Blue Laser

The majority of blue lasers on the market make use of a Gallium-nitride semiconductor. Depending on the application, indium gallium nitride or aluminum gallium nitride LEDs can produce both red and blue wavelengths of color.

Significance

The creation of semiconductor-based blue laser technology was big step forward for electronics. Along with red and green lasers, it completed the three primary colors of human vision, which has allowed the creation of white-light LEDs. It also paved the way for advances in home electronics.

Blue Lasers in the Home

If you own a set-top Blu-Ray, an HD-DVD device or a Playstation 3, you have technology brought to you thanks to blue laser technology. The significantly narrower wavelength of the blue laser allows for greatly reduced size in the pits and lands that make up the 1s and 0s of the data on Blu-Ray and HD-DVD discs, allowing them to achieve the incredible capacity boost over standard DVDs that delivers high-definition video and high-fidelity audio in today’s audio/video market.