The contributions in this volume reflect not only the growing understanding of the underlying mechanisms controlling the various reactions in laser surface processing, but also the potential of several developing applications of direct processing. The most notable trend in the field currently is the technique of laser ablation, which is reported in almost a quarter of the papers in this volume. Whilst by no means a new phenomenon, attention has until recent years remained in the area of lithography and UV-sensitive materials. The growth in interest lies in the use of the technique to grow multi-component thin films and multi-layers. A number of papers on the topic of process diagnostics and in-situ measurements are also included.
The theme of these annual meetings is centred around the physical and chemical modification of thin films and surfaces induced by the action of photon, ion, neutral, or electron beams in a variety of environments. Consequently these proceedings provide a comprehensive and unified presentation of the latest developments in this field.