So far, our
impact on Earth’s
climate has been
our use of fossil
fuels. But what if
alter the weather
[ COVER STORY ]
22 Laser-Based Weather Control
The far-fetched concept of weather control just might be in our scientific
forecast. Researchers are making progress in using ultrashort laser pulses to
create lightning and cue cloud formation, with potential applications in agriculture,
public safety and beyond.
Jérôme Kasparian, Ludger Wöste and Jean-Pierre Wolf
28 The Road to Multi-Dimensional Bit-by-Bit Optical Data Storage
Recent advances in optical data storage have led to the development of a
five-dimensional device that could hold up to 2 ,000 times more data than a
Min Gu and Xiangping Li
34 Holography and the Laser
The invention of the hologram actually predates that of the laser, but they both
came of age during the technological boom of the 1960s. Holography has not
matched the growth of some laser applications, but if you look in your pocket or purse,
you will find it is alive and well.
42 The Optical Illusions of Cosmetics
Using optically complex pigments and particles that scatter light, today’s cosmetic
scientists and designers have engineered sophisticated new products that enhance
people’s features rather than cover up their skin.
50 Rayleigh Was Right: Electromagnetic Fields and Corrugated Interfaces
Lord Rayleigh theorized that the electromagnetic field in a periodically corrugated
interface is composed of waves outgoing from the interface. A careful numerical
analysis suggests that this hypothesis is true well beyond the commonly stated limit.
Alexandre V. Tishchenko
COVER: Photo illustration of a lightning strike guided by a wire-pulling rocket.