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HiLASE centre wants to cover 20% of its budget from contracts

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Prague/Dolni Brezany, Central Bohemia, June 30 (CTK) – Laser development for companies home and abroad should cover 20 percent of the budget of the HiLASE centre near Prague to make it less dependent on state financing, HiLASE director Tomas Mocek has told CTK.

The centre received about 10 million crowns for research for other firms and institutions in the last few years and the interest in the development of special lasers or in testing materials in HiLASE has been increasing, he said.

The annual running costs of the centre that opened in 2013 are 110 million crowns.

Lat year, the centre gained 3,.4 million crowns for its work, which is about 3 percent of the running costs. This year it expects to earn approximately two time more.

The centre cooperates with Czech and Japanese companies as well as universities and research institutes from Europe and other parts of the world. The centre focuses on the construction and development of lasers and their industrial application, Mocek said.

HiLASE (High average power pulsed LASErs) has the Bivoj super laser with the output of 1000-watt that was built by Czech and foreign experts in Britain for 2.5 years. It has the strongest output in the world among the lasers of its kind. It can improve the qualities of metals.

Apart from the huge Bivoj, the centre has the Perla compact lasers.

Mocek said the ream headed by Nadezhda Bulgakova revealed how to “teach” a laser to relatively quickly create periodic structures in nano and micro scales on the surfaces of materials. In this way, glaze ice can be prevented from forming, which might by used in aviation.

The HiLASE centre has about 80 employees, half of whom are foreigners.

The laser and optical research has a long tradition in the Czech Republic. After the USA and the Soviet Union, then Czechoslovakia became the third country to acquire its own laser in 1962.

Apart from HiLASE, there is also the ELI Beamlines laser centre in Dolni Brezany. Both centres fall under the Czech Academy of Sciences. ELI Beamlines does research in the fields of physics, biomedicine and astrophysics, while HiLASE focuses on developing new technologies.

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