Science and Technology Facilities Council
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UK's world leading laser facility celebrates 40 outstanding years

STFC’s Central Laser Facility is celebrating forty years of spectacular science and achievement as one of the world’s most advanced laser research, development, exploitation and training facilities.

The lasers developed by the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s Central Laser Facility (CLF) over the past forty years are in use at many research facilities around the world and its expertise is recognised around the globe. In addition the CLF has a strong background in innovation, technology transfer and spin-out companies.

Based at STFC’s Rutherford Appleton Laboratory site in Oxfordshire the CLF has been keeping the UK at the forefront of laser science for forty years by discovering and developing new technologies. From humble beginnings with just a single laser, the facility now has a large suite of instruments, and works with and for researchers and organisations around the world.

Celebrating the anniversary this week Professor John Collier, Director of the STFC Central Laser Facility said:

"For forty years the team of CLF scientists, engineers and researchers here in Oxfordshire have been developing laser technologies and techniques that have been instrumental in opening up new areas of study and research. Part of our success has been down to the way we have listened with our many collaborator organisations in academia and in the commercial sector and evolved to reflect science's growing and changing demands."

The technology developed by CLF has a range of potential uses including new medical applications, imaging capabilities and the processing of novel materials. Over the last forty years the partnership between CLF staff and the large number of members of UK and European universities who use the specialised laser equipment has led to a broad range of experiments in physics, chemistry and biology that has enhanced our understanding of the world around us.

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