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Corporation for Laser Optics Research Achieves Blue Laser Power Breakthrough

Press Release  |  Mar 22, 1999

Powerful Blue Laser Smashes Five Watt Barrier; Will Speed Availability Of Laser Projectors For Televisions, Sports Stadiums And Movie Theatres

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. -- March 22, 1999 -- The Corporation for Laser Optics Research (COLOR), a technology leader in using pulsed lasers to project large-screen, full-color video images, today announced that it has set a world record by projecting seven watts of blue light from a lamp-pumped laser.

The previous world record was also held by COLOR, which succeeded in producing five watts of blue-light output in 1998. This work is part of COLOR's research and development efforts and has potential applications in a wide range of industries, including immediate applications for the movie, television, computer display and projection display markets.

"This is a very significant breakthrough," said Dr. Stephen Benton, a professor at the MIT Media Lab and a member of COLOR's Board of Directors. "Blue light is the hardest color to produce with lasers and attempts at producing blue light are usually measured in tens of milliwatts. In contrast, COLOR's blue lasers are a hundred times more powerful and the company's engineers have succeeded in shattering the five watt barrier, reaching seven watts and improving the laser's power by 40 percent in one leap."

COLOR increased the power of its blue laser by making improvements to the conversion process used within the ColorVision(TM) projector to convert infrared laser light into a specific wavelength of coherent blue light (446 nanometers). This specific wavelength of blue light maximizes the image brightness for blue laser output. The new conversion process is derived from COLOR's patented use of RGB pulsed lasers in video projection, which is more efficient in increasing the brightness level of transmitted video images as compared to light bulb-based technologies. Its success will produce the most vivid images and speed the deployment of lasers in applications ranging from home theatres to electronic cinemas.

"This is an important milestone for the company and we plan to quickly integrate the new laser into our systems for sports arenas, shopping malls and theatres," said Pete Chiasson, president and CEO of COLOR. "We are currently working on a smaller system that will be used in televisions and computer monitors. I am confident that within the next few years, laser-powered projection systems will revolutionize entertainment and visual communications, replacing cathode ray tubes and other projection technologies in many additional applications such as materials processing, data storage, spectroscopy and environmental monitoring."

About COLOR's Technology

Laser projection technology provides substantial benefits over traditional large-area display screens, with the most important being its combination of brightness and vibrant colors--even in brightly lit sports stadiums, arenas and exhibit halls. Where other displays may wash out in bright light, COLOR's laser images maintain their expanded range of brilliant colors and viewability.

The flexibility of a laser projection system is unmatched, especially when compared to CRT-based systems, composite video walls or bulb/LED based screens. COLOR's patented laser light source allows full-color, large format video images to be laser-projected onto a variety of surfaces such as multi-sided rear-screen displays, front projected screens and whitewashed walls, using an array of red, green and blue lasers. The laser display system yields much greater color spacing, so the viewer sees bolder and more saturated colors. They have a lower initial cost and lower long-term cost-of-ownership than other large-screen video imaging systems.


COLOR, the COrporation for Laser Optics Research, is a world technology leader in the development of video projection systems that use pulsed lasers to produce static or dynamic images on almost any surface. COLOR is the only company to have developed and patented a high-power, pulsed blue-light laser.

The company's first-generation ColorVision(TM) systems are designed for large facilities and are currently operational in areas such as sports arenas, airports and public access buildings. COLOR has a strong patent/patent-pending portfolio covering key technologies critical to using lasers for next-generation video display. COLOR is headquartered in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and has strong ties to prestigious universities such as MIT and Princeton along with key consumer electronics companies.

More details on COLOR and its products are available at

ColorVision is a trademark of the Corporation for Laser Optics Research.


Pen White, 603/422-8103


Schwartz Communications, Inc.
Mark McClennan and Lisa Beyer


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