Matjaž Humar

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First laser inside a human cell published in Nature Photonics

For the first time a laser was implanted and operated inside a single live human cell. Furthermore, we have demonstrated that the fat cells in our body already contain lasers, which need only to be activated. In both cases the lasers are in the form of small solid spheres or lipid droplets. Deformation of the droplets enables accurate measurements of the forces inside the cells. The emission of each laser within a cell can also be used as a barcode with enough unique combinations to tag all the cells in the human body.
This discovery was published in the Nature Photonics paper Intracellular microlasers and highlighted on its cover. The news about this research was also covered in a number of media.


Intracellular lasers video


World's first 3D laser

We developed the first practical 3D microlaser. Most of the current lasers emit light into a narrow beam; in contrast, our laser emits in all directions isotropically and acts as a coherent point source of light. The laser is made just by mechanical mixing of liquids and the optical structure is formed by self assembly of cholesteric liquid crystals. It can be used in a number of applications such as for telecommunications, photonic integrated circuits, imaging and sensing. The news about this very important discovery was published in a number of different Slovenian media (Finance, Delo, TV SLO 1...) and foreign media, covering at least 40 million readers throughout the world.


Nature Photonics article

Liquid-crystal microcavity on the cover of Nature Photonics journal. Liquid-crystal microdroplets were used as whispering-gallery-mode resonators and lasers. They can be tuned by applying electric field and can be therefore used as tunable laser sources, active filters, switches and sensors.
The article was written as part of my PhD work on soft matter photonics. I draw the picture on the cover using POV-Ray.


My asteroid

Matjazhumar (17201) is a main-belt asteroid, located between the orbits of the planets Mars and Jupiter. It has the orbital period of 5.2 years and the absolute magnitude of 14. With its 3-7 km diameter is almost as large as the one that caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. So you don't want it to fell to the Earth.

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