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Center for Laser Applications (CLA)

A Center of Excellence, established by the Tennessee Higher Education Commission.

Research interns working in lab space

The CLA is a multi-disciplined and collaborative graduate research center, fostering and promoting research in the applications of lasers for diagnostics and materials processing. Our mission is to advance laser applications in spectroscopy and materials synthesis through education, innovation, and service.

Our capabilities include combustion systems and jet engine/space propulsion systems development, laser materials processing, ground-based (simulated) aerospace testing, electro-optics, non-linear optics, quantum optics, molecular spectroscopy, and laser induced assisted chemical reactions. 

The CLA unites faculty and researchers from different disciplines Including Bio/Nano-photonics, Material Science, Laser Material Interaction, Laser Spectroscopy, Laser based Measurement/Diagnostics, and Non-Equilibrium Fluid Physics. The strengths and interest of our established capabilities are unique for both the state and the nation and prove critical for many industrial, defense, and basic science applications.

The CLA makes critical advances toward the future competitiveness of technological industries and institutions through education, innovation, and service.

Our research mission is growing. The funding provided by the Tennessee Higher Education Commission, coupled with support from the university, provided valuable leverage for sponsored research. The research awards continue to increase. This growth is possible because of the dedication of our faculty and the support of THEC and UTSI. 

CLA remains active in Outreach and Business Development. The faculty are active in scientific conferences and local business meetings. Productivity among Center faculty has been outstanding during the last five-year period. During fiscal years 2018 through 2022, Center faculty published 194 peer reviewed articles, 8 book chapters, and presented (or had abstracts accepted) at 102 regional, national, and international meetings.

For an in-depth look at CLA’s mission, productivity, and financials, please see our most recent annual report

Past Annual Reports