About Us


The Association of Laser Users (AILU) was established in 1995 as an independent, non-profit making organisation run by and for laser users involved in activities including manufacturing, healthcare, academic and industrial research; as well as suppliers of laser-related products and services. Our current corporate members include leading players in the UK laser materials community.

The aims and objectives of the association are set out in its Memorandum and Articles of Association.

They include, in particular, the fostering of co-operation and collaboration and the dissemination of information, experience and expertise relating to industrial laser technology, laser materials processing; its applications and related technologies.

AILU President

Dr Jon Blackburn, TWI

President's Message
From AILU's quarterly magazine The Laser User
Issue 99 Winter 2021.

"Fellow laser enthusiasts,

I'll begin with a late but heartfelt wish for a Happy New Year to you all – we hope you and your families are managing to stay safe and well, and have found ways to cope with the added pressures that daily life now brings.

The Christmas period brought some welcome news to UK, with the MHRA approval of the AstraZeneca vaccine, as well as the long-awaited agreement on a trade deal between the UK and the EU. Although there are clearly some turbulent times ahead over the next few months, I think these two announcements, and the subsequent rate at which vaccinations are progressing in the UK, point to a more stable (normal?) future in the medium-term. I’m certainly looking forward to the time when I no longer have to spend my days finding a balance between my duties for my long-standing employer (TWI) and that of Head Teacher at the newly established Blackburn comprehensive in East Anglia. I have been told that my OFSTED rating will not be favourable.

2020 was also not a straightforward for AILU, with the postponement of ILAS and the inability to run physical workshops having quite an impact on the Association. We’re fortunate to have a very hard-working and dedicated team at AILU, who have adapted well to the challenges faced over the last year. A great example of this is the upcoming ILAS, which will be held virtually on the 24th and 25th March. We’ve selected an online platform that will include everything you have come to expect from this first-class symposium;

  • Plenary presenters
  • Three parallel sessions of presentations including keynote speakers
  • A full exhibition – with online interactivity – meet exhibitors 1-to-1
  • Live discussion panels on key topics
  • Excellent networking opportunities – an online Meeting Hub to meet other delegates live or to suit your schedule
  • Symposium Awards, including entertainment – apply now if you have musical skills to display!

The virtual format should also be more inclusive, as it significantly reduces the costs to attend - in registration and travel/accommodation fees, as well as the cost of evening ‘refreshments’. Please think about who in your organisation could benefit from attending (I’ve not been to a symposium for nearly 1 year!) and visit the symposium website for more details – ilas2021.co.uk"



The organisation of AILU is under the direction of an elected standing committee made up of representatives from the UK industrial laser community. Elections are held annually at the Annual General Meeting. (See Joining the AILU committee and Officers and Committee)

AILU provides a wide range of general services to laser users and suppliers and hosts a number of special interest groups (SIGs) to better support members who have particular interests in common. These include a Job Shop SIG (established in 1995, with 86 members*) for subcontract laser-based engineering companies; a Market Development SIG  (established in 2005, with 240 members*) for suppliers of laser-related products and services; a Medical SIG (established in 2007, with 55 members*) for clinicians, manufacturers using lasers for manufacture of medical devices and suppliers of laser-related products and services; and the Micro:Nano SIG, AILU’s newest, launched in mid 2008 at AILU's 10th microprocessing workshop.”


The current activities of AILU include:

AILU’s Membership

Application for membership of AILU is open to the industrial laser community worldwide, and those with an interest in this community and its activities. We currently have approximately 300 members, made up of mainly manufacturing industry including laser job shops (40%), suppliers of laser-related products and services (30%) and research and consultancy organisations (25%). 

To find out more about AILU membership click here.

See member benefits to review how membership could benefit you.

©AILU: Text on this page is available under the terms of the Wikipedia GNU Free Documentation License.

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