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Thread: magnetism from light?!!

  1. #1
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    Laser Warning magnetism from light?!!

    today in laser news (well, technically it's yesterday's news) ...

    http://michigantoday.umich.edu/2011/...y&auid=8154157

    "Rand and his colleagues found that at the right intensity, when light is traveling through a material that does not conduct electricity, the light field can generate magnetic effects that are 100 million times stronger than previously expected."

    wrap your mind around that for a minute ...

  2. #2
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    Interesting

    haven't seen you before josh.
    I see your from japan?
    Guess your doing alright =)

  3. #3
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    Interesting read.... but I'd guess thast it will be some time before this
    turns into a viable Solar Cell....

    The light must be shone through a material that does not conduct electricity, such as glass. And it must be focused to an intensity of 10 million watts per square centimeter.

    Jerry
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  4. #4
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    Thumbs down Neat effect in the lab, but practicall applications? The jury is still out...

    I'm with Jerry on this one.

    Irradiance of 10 *million* WATTS per square centimeter. Think about that for a moment. What else could you do with that sort of concentrated power? For sure a solar cell wouldn't be my first idea...

    They also say that the magnetic effect is 100 million times stronger than expected. Well, what was expected? My guess is near zero, since the material (glass) was an insulator to start with. So 100 million times stronger than almost nothing is still almost nothing.

    And then they claim that the thermal load on the glass will be low. Yeah, right. You put 10 million watts per square centimeter through a piece of glass, and you think it won't get at least a little bit warm? Hell, even the best glass on the planet isn't perfectly transparent, and even if you could make glass that was 99.99% transparent (which is damn doubtful), that's still a kilowatt of heat per square centimeter at those irradiance levels... (Pretty freakin' hot, in other words.)

    Finally, compared to conventional solar cells, how much more energy could you extract with this device? Because I promise you that if you put 10 million watts per square centimeter on any device, even a basic heat engine, you'll be able to generate a shitload of power. (Which is why concentrated solar thermal power generation works as well as it does.)

    This article is useless without more hard data. How strong, exactly, was the magnetic force? How much heat, exactly, was absorbed by the glass? And what happens when you integrate a conductor into the material so you can harness this magnetic force? Oh wait, they haven't figured out how to do that yet.

    It's a cool effect, yes. But until they share more information, I'll take a pass on the idea of this being used in the next solar cell.

    Adam

  5. #5
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    You gotta start somewhere! this could just be the seed at something bigger in the future

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by lasersbee View Post
    Interesting read.... but I'd guess thast it will be some time before this
    turns into a viable Solar Cell....


    Jerry
    I read somewhere that IR solar cells are the future.

    Apparently they produce many times more power than current cells, can be mounted on the sides of buildings because they take IR radiated from the ground, and as a result of the latter, they work all year round and even in the night!!

    I can't remember where I read it, but it wasn't April the 1st. Anyway, they've not come to market yet obviously as apparently there are problems in outputting the electricity due to the frequency.

  7. #7
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    Sounds amazing!

  8. #8
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    Hey, it's a start. Your computer didn't just pop out of nowhere, they had to start with a huge array of tubes, which could barely process anything, however look where it led ...

    The more discoveries, even if impractical or insignificant could lead to something much bigger later on. Not to mention its an interesting result.

  9. #9
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    Thumbs down

    The difference is that when the vacuum tube was invented, there were plenty of papers published about it. Those publications contained hard data that would-be experimenters could use to both replicate the device and predict in advance how it would perform.

    This article provides none of the above.

    It *could* be something new and cool, or it could be utterly useless. Given the amount of junk science out there, my money is on the useless category. (Ponds and Fleischman, anyone?) Until there are more facts, I'm not going to get excited about it.

    Adam

  10. #10
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    Hmm,not much info about the pre vacuum tube invention,but anyway I still use vacuum tubes!

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