While the benefits of lasers that heat can't be shunned, a Petaluma-based startup has slightly different applications in mind for its ultrashort pulse lasers. Raydiance has purportedly developed a laser that "looks like an ordinary slide projector," yet can emit "burst of photons so intense that it can vaporize matter without creating heat." Its uses could span every area from removing tattoos (yes, even Zune ones) without burning the skin, killing cancer cells without affecting healthy ones, or handling any undercover task that the military may require. As it stands, FDA collaboration is said to be "in the early stages," but considering that the firm has already raised some $25 million and plans on doubling its staff to 60 folks in the not too distance future, commercialization may be but a blink away.

[Via Digg, image courtesy of BusinessWeek]

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