• Question: How big is the largest laser in the world and how bright is it?

    Asked by jacklee to Rob, James, Marcus, Martin, Suzanne on 20 Mar 2012. This question was also asked by annlouisa.
    • Photo: Martin Zaltz Austwick

      Martin Zaltz Austwick answered on 20 Mar 2012:

      The most powerful lasers in the world are used for fusion research, and are around one PetaWatt. This is a thousand million million Watts. A 1 Watt visible laser would be enough to blind you, and 100 Watts can be enough to cut through flesh. These PetaWatt lasers are seriously powerful.

    • Photo: Marcus Gallagher-Jones

      Marcus Gallagher-Jones answered on 20 Mar 2012:

      Wow that laser is seriously impressive (acctually it’s 192 lasers focussed on one spot but it’s still pretty amazing) If you are interesting in learning more here is a link to their website:


      Thanks for pointing me in the direction Martin.

    • Photo: Robert Thompson

      Robert Thompson answered on 20 Mar 2012:

      I actually don’t know, but I’m interested so I’ve done a bit of a web search.

      This article in the Telegraph seemed pretty cool

      “Capable of producing a beam of light so intense that it would be equivalent to the power received by the Earth from the sun focused onto a speck smaller than a tip of a pin”


      I’m now off to find more about this.

    • Photo: Suzanne McEndoo

      Suzanne McEndoo answered on 21 Mar 2012:

      Wow, that’s a seriously impressive laser! I don’t think I can really add to that. 🙂