fem·​to·​sec·​ond | \ ˈfem(p)-tə-ˌse-kənd How to pronounce femtosecond (audio) , -kənt, -tō- \

Definition of femtosecond

: one quadrillionth of a second

Examples of femtosecond in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Zewail, who would go on to win a Nobel Prize for his research, measured these miniscule changes in femtoseconds; a femtosecond is one millionth of a billionth of a second. NBC News, "Scientists clock the fastest interval of time in 'zeptoseconds'," 19 Oct. 2020 During the late 1980s and early 1990s, however, the pulse durations were brought down to as little as a few femtoseconds (a femtosecond is equal to 10–15 second), approaching the time frame of atomic motions. Quanta Magazine, "Alchemy Arrives in a Burst of Light," 30 Sep. 2020 For this solar purifier, the scientists treated aluminum sheeting using a treatment of femtosecond-long—a quadrillionth of a second—laser pulses. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, "The Army Is Building an Anti-Gravity, Water-Purifying Solar Panel," 15 July 2020 The medium in question is a block of high-purity glass, which has voxels etched into it with femtosecond lasers. Jim Salter, Ars Technica, "Microsoft’s Project Silica offers robust thousand-year storage," 7 Nov. 2019 In fact, the pulse goes from being 20fs in duration to 0.1fs (a femtosecond is 10-15s). Chris Lee, Ars Technica, "Trampoline mirror may push laser pulse through fabric of the Universe," 14 Sep. 2019 Tuned to pick up near-infrared light and completing a scan in a few femtoseconds (10–15 seconds), the loop would see the vacuum glowing like a gas at room temperature. Quanta Magazine, "Quantum Weirdness Now a Matter of Time," 19 Jan. 2016 This requires that all possible states of the traveling particle be superposed in a single, coherent quantum state for tens of femtoseconds. Peter Byrne, Quanta Magazine, "In Pursuit of Quantum Biology With Birgitta Whaley," 30 July 2013 The Non-Lethal Laser-Induced Plasma Effect (NL-LIPE) system can be used to manipulate air molecules, creating a ball of plasma that oscillates to create sound waves with a stream of femtosecond-long laser bursts. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "Non-Lethal Weapon: DOD seeks to use lasers to create shouting will-o-the-wisp," 22 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'femtosecond.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of femtosecond

1976, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of femtosecond was in 1976

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Cite this Entry

“Femtosecond.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/femtosecond. Accessed 3 Mar. 2021.

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