The laser facility near Bucharest has reached a power of 10 peta-watts, the biggest in the world
The laser within the Extreme Light Infrastructure Nuclear Physics Facility (ELI-NP) in Magurele, near Bucharest, has reported a new historic performance, as on March 10 it reached a power of 10 peta-watts. To get an idea of what this means, one peta is 10 at the power of 15. The laser facility in Magurele has thus become the most powerful such facility in the world, exceeding the power of that in South Korea, which produces only 4 peta-watts.
The Romanian authorities have congratulated the team of Romanian and foreign researchers in Magurele. According to a press release, government officials underlined that this complex project, ELI-NP, which demonstrates the significant scientific progress reported at world level in the field of high power lasers, is being built with financial resources allotted under the European Regional Development Operational Program plus national funding. A communiqué issued by PM Dancila writes that Romanians have all the reasons to be proud of their scientists who, alongside foreign experts, have managed to build the most powerful laser in the world.
The benefits of implementing the ELI-NP project are numerous. Experts have taken a huge step in their search for practical answers in critical domains such as the replacement of expensive technologies in the energy field or researching revolutionary methods in the medical field. The PM has also congratulated the entire team of experts working on the ELI-NP facility and has assured them of the Romanian government’s full support.
The high power laser facility in Magurele will help discover radioactive isotopes that will be able to treat cancer or contribute to the full identification of the content of radioactive waste barrels without the barrels being opened, which is extremely difficult at present. The laser is also going to be used to test materials used in space missions that unfold for longer periods of time.
The project in Magurele was launched in 2013 and the investment stands at almost 300 million Euros. The ELI-NP infrastructure spans almost 33,000 square meters, consisting of high quality thermally-insulated buildings, most of them used for the high power laser facility, for the connected high intensity gamma ray source and for experiments. The compound also includes civil constructions such as offices, a guesthouse and a cafeteria. Working at the biggest laser facility of the world will be a team of experts from all over the world, eager and willing to experience the new opportunities offered by science. The Magurele laser facility benefits from state-of-the-art equipment, so researchers are expected to discover new, amazing things every day.
(translated by: Lacramioara Simion)