See how a lost city was rediscovered with lasers from the sky

This ten-minute video details the rediscovery of Mahendraparvata, a lost city that once thrived in the mountains of Cambodia 1,200 years ago. Hidden for centuries by the country's dense, remote jungles, the city was only rediscovered with the use of everyone's favorite archaeological tool: airborne lasers. » 6/16/13 5:00pm 6/16/13 5:00pm

Functional Iron Man gauntlet shoots lasers powerful enough to pop a…

Patrick Priebe of Laser Gadgets builds custom props with a little something extra, from steampunk laser guns that can really burn to a crossbow that fires buzz saw blades. Here he adds his laser magic to an Iron Man-style gauntlet, arming it with enough power to pop a balloon. » 1/20/13 1:00pm 1/20/13 1:00pm

Watch a laser set off a firecracker inside a balloon, without popping…

What happens when you ignite a firecracker inside a transparent balloon? YouTube user WorldScott sets his blue laser to the task, and amazingly, the balloon makes it out intact. » 4/07/12 11:30am 4/07/12 11:30am

Most powerful laser ever created can heat matter to over 3.6 million…

This newly created X-ray laser is just unimaginably powerful. It's a billion times brighter than any previous X-ray source, and it can probe hot dense matter at nearly four million degrees. This laser could unlock the secrets of the Sun. » 1/25/12 1:20pm 1/25/12 1:20pm

Scientists are working on a "tractor beam" that could recover…

It's the interstellar version of a man overboard — an astronaut, thrown from his spacecraft, drifting helplessly into space. Until recently, safety measures to account for such a situation have been somewhat limited. » 10/17/11 8:40am 10/17/11 8:40am

Lasers reveal the scientific basis for sparkly vampires?

A recent scientific discovery reveals a remarkable similarity between vampires and diamonds - other than the fact that they both seem, currently, to be a girl's best friend. » 7/18/11 7:00am 7/18/11 7:00am

Genetically engineered cell becomes world's first living laser

It looks like we're one step closer to having laser vision (or at least, laser-based diagnostic and therapeutic techniques). Researchers at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston have genetically engineered the world's first "living laser." That's right - a living cell can shoot laser… » 6/13/11 1:22pm 6/13/11 1:22pm

Lasers reveal exactly how guitars create music

When you play a stringed instrument, the strings vibrate against the soundboard, amplifying the sound created by the string. The vibrations involved are tiny, as little as a millionth of a meter, and that's why researchers got out their lasers. » 5/29/11 10:30am 5/29/11 10:30am

Powerful next generation lasers get us one step closer to creating…

The Extreme Light Infrastructure is a new project that will build three incredibly powerful new lasers. Capable of creating energy pulses 20 times more powerful than anything before, these new lasers could help us probe the world of weird physics. » 4/25/11 4:36pm 4/25/11 4:36pm

Laser blasts could unlock secrets of practical superconductors

Take an ordinary, non-superconducting material and hit it with light, and its electrons suddenly reorganize into a resistance-free, superconducting arrangement. This only works at extremely low temperatures, but it could help us solve the riddle of practical superconductors. » 1/23/11 10:20am 1/23/11 10:20am

Imitation black hole created on Earth using lasers and pure glass

Yes, we've managed to create a black hole...or at least the optical equivalent of a black hole's extreme, light-trapping properties thanks to an ingenious combination of lasers and glass. Best of all, it offers proof of Stephen Hawking's famous radiation. » 9/30/10 9:53am 9/30/10 9:53am

Future SETI: Looking for Alien Lasers, Gravity Waves

If you've ever seen the movie Contact, you'll know the alien-hunter stereotype: quirky, visionary loners who sit up all night listening to static, hoping for the signal that will change the world. That's probably not far off from real life, except that SETI (that's Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence) scientists… » 4/17/08 9:30am 4/17/08 9:30am

The Secret Origin of the Ray Gun in Science Fiction

We've told you all about our favorite rayguns, blasters, flechette pistols, and laser guns before, but where did they all come from? Laser pistols are as identifiable with science fiction as rocketships, aliens, and robots, even though the first laser wasn't invented until 1960. So what spurred science fiction… » 3/24/08 2:00pm 3/24/08 2:00pm

Smite Primitive Screwheads With Your Laser Gun

Ever wanted to carry a laser gun back in time to the Dark Ages and have everyone worship you as some sort of demigod before they eventually overthrow your ass and toss you down a well? Well, now you can. Ascaron Entertainment is releasing the role-playing game Hard To Be A God in April, and it's probably exactly what… » 1/29/08 10:00am 1/29/08 10:00am