How Do People Use Lasers?

This laser is cutting a piece of sheet metal.

A laser is a thin, powerful beam of light. Lasers use mirrors to focus light energy. People use lasers every day. You may even have a laser at home. A DVD player uses a laser to read the information on a DVD. The information is used to show the picture and play the sound of your favorite movie. 

When you go to the store, the cashier uses a laser to read the barcode on the things you buy. The barcode tells the computer what the item is and how much it costs. 

Some lasers are so powerful they can cut through steel. Companies that make parts out of metal use lasers. The laser beam melts just enough metal to cut a thin line. Lasers are also used to cut diamonds. 

Doctors use lasers, too. Eye surgeons can use a laser to reshape the eye. The shape of the eye determines how well you see. Doctors can use lasers to break kidney stones apart. Lasers can be used to make very tiny cuts during surgery. This is important to speed the healing process. 

What do you think? What else could you do with a laser? 

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