The three volumes VIII/1A, B, C document the state of the art of "Laser Physics and Applications". Scientific trends and related technological aspects are considered by compiling results and conclusions from phenomenology, observation and experience. Reliable data, physical fundamentals and detailed references are presented.
In the recent decades the laser beam source matured to a universal tool common to scientific research as well as to industrial use. Today a technical goal is the generation of optical power towards shorter wavelengths, shorter pulses and higher power for application in science and industry. Tailoring the optical energy in wavelength, space and time is a requirement for the investigation of laser-induced processes, i.e. excitation, non-linear amplification, storage of optical energy, etc. According to the actual trends in laser research and development, Vol. VIII/1 is split into three parts: Vol. VIII/1A with its two subvolumes 1A1 and 1A2 covers laser fundamentals, Vol. VIII/1B deals with laser systems and Vol. VIII/1C gives an overview on laser applications.