News From the Field
New Kind of Optical Fiber Developed
March 2, 2011
The very first optical fiber with a core of zinc selenide has been made--a compound that can be used as a semiconductor. The new class of optical fiber allows more manipulation of light and promises to open the door to more versatile laser-radar technology, which could lead to improved surgical and medical lasers, better countermeasure lasers for the military, and superior environment-sensing lasers for measuring pollutants and bioterrorist chemical agents.
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2012, its budget was $7.0 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives about 50,000 competitive requests for funding, and makes about 11,500 new funding awards. NSF also awards about $593 million in professional and service contracts yearly.
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