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Czech laser centres preparing for first World Day of Light

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Prague, May 11 (CTK) – The HiLASE and ELI Beamlines laser centres in Dolni Brezany, near Prague, are preparing for the International Day of Light that is to take place for the first time this year, falling on May 16, the anniversary of the birth of laser in 1960, they said in a press release on Friday.

HiLASE director Tomas Mocek, who coordinates the research project “Light in the service of society”, will attend the world day’s opening ceremony in Paris.

A UNESCO conference introduced the Day of Light last November to mark the first use of laser by engineer Theodore H. Mainman.

Its introduction proves the crucial role of laser and light technologies for people in the 21st-century, the centres wrote.

Both Czech centres have prepared a free access day. In HiLASE, lectures will be held on the ways to use laser in science and everyday life, and presentations of laser application will also take place.

“For the first time, the visitors will be able to see the model of the Bivoj super laser, which holds the world record among the medium-output lasers,” the centres said.

Bivoj is a Czech mythical hero who is said to have overpowered a huge wild boar and brought it alive to the sovereign’s court.

ELI Beamlines has prepared an interactive programme, with the visitors attending lectures, trying laser devices, touring the laser building and watching unusual light effects.

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.

The two above laser 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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