The author of this technology Arthur Ashkin received the Nobel prize.
An article describing the study published online in the journal Nature Photonics, 18 March. The work was done in the Department of engineering and applied science California Institute of technology.
The use of light for mechanical retention with the size and weight of the objects is not a new idea. In the 70-ies of the last century, its development has led to the creation of optical tweezers, allowing you to carefully manipulate very small objects and is now very widely used in Microbiology. Last year the author of this technology Arthur Ashkin received the Nobel prize.
Now we are talking about objects significantly larger in size. The authors believe that their technology could be used for acceleration of spaceships with a laser beam. It is appropriate to recall about the project send microsondes to alpha Centauri, sponsored by Israeli-Russian billionaire Yuri Milner – acceleration mini ships with solar sails are supposed to be implemented exactly by the laser radiation from the Ground. Although this project seems to be not associated with the development of Caltech, but the Association arise automatically.
As stated by the authors, using radiation in the optical range, you can manage objects of different sizes – from micrometers to meters. It is possible, and its earthly application, for example, in the production of relatively small objects such as circuit boards.