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Learn how plasma physics and lasers improve life, business at UCI lecture



Roger McWilliams, professor of physics and astronomy, will talk on “Commercial Applications of University Research: Plasma Physics and Lasers” as part of the 10th annual Discover the Physical Sciences 2007-08 Breakfast Lecture Series. This series is sponsored by the UC Irvine School of Physical Sciences.
DATE: Tuesday, November 27, 2007
TIME: 7:30-9 a.m.
LOCATION: University Club, UCI campus.


University researchers play important roles in the invention and development of new products. Plasma physics and lasers from the laboratory have been used in the creation and defense of intellectual property in fields such as laser navigation systems, semiconductor chips and laser eye surgery. Plasma physics and lasers can help cure cancer, improve eyesight and make the Internet work. Plasmas, such as the sun, exist wherever matter is hot enough to pull electrons off neutral atoms. A laser is a device that controls the way energized atoms release photons.

In this talk, Roger McWilliams will show how plasmas and lasers are beneficial to business and life. He will describe projects in which his lab has partnered with industry, including product development and providing expertise required to protect intellectual property.

For more than 30 years, McWilliams’ research has focused on experimental electricity and magnetism with an emphasis in plasma physics, lasers and optical devices, and plasma sources and processing. McWilliams consults and serves as an expert witness for patent issues, and he has helped many firms address issues in optics and lasers, plasma physics, spectroscopy, vacuum technology, and particle and fluid transport. He also directs UCI’s Campuswide Honors Program.


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