• Technical Conference:  15 – 19 September 2019
  • Science & Industry Showcase:  17 – 18 September 2019

The FIO + LS Blog


By Pedro Vallejo-Ramirez | Posted: 23 October 2014

This topic has been passed on from mouth to mouth amongst students, professors, researchers, and industry representatives in FiO ever since Dr. Olivier Guyon delivered an energetic talk on the search for Exoplanets during the Student Leadership Conference on Sunday. Dr.Guyon, Associate Professor and Associate Astronomer at the College of Optical Sciences (U of Arizona), stepped on stage and dropped a few one-line jokes that quickly won the audience composed primarily of young graduate and undergraduate students from all over the world.

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The fastest aligner in the South West!

By Pedro Vallejo-Ramirez | Posted: 22 October 2014

Amidst the scorching sun of the Starr Pass scientists are bustling in the Marriot Hallways preparing for their talks, arranging their schedules for the day, or networking with their colleagues. You can feel the energy vibrating in the air (literally!).

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Day 3 at FiO/LS 2014: Impressive beyond expectations

By Shamsul Arafin | Posted: 22 October 2014

Like yesterday, FiO/LS 2014 continued to impress us today with many events, such as technical sessions, tutorial talks, poster sessions, symposia, special events and more! I was really happy and amazed at these events. It’s the time now to update you with some of the highnotes:

In the morning, the invited talk on Quantum-dot Microcavity Lasers with Superradian Coupling and Non-classical Light Emission, by Frank Jahnke, Univ. of Bremen, Germany was very inspiring and impressive.

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A big day full of plenary talks, symposiums and social events

By Shamsul Arafin | Posted: 21 October 2014

Many greetings from Tucson!
The day started with an amazing plenary talk by Prof. Jeff Kimble from CALTECH, USA where he presented a new exciting possibility, the so-called alligator waveguide, which is nothing but photonic crystal waveguide that integrates nanophotonics with atomic systems. Hence, the single atoms can be successfully trapped inside the waveguide. He also mentioned how much efforts he and his graduate students had to put into creating such alligator waveguides. In his presentation, he then pointed out that such new paradigms emerge by combining atomic physics with one- and two-dimensional photonic crystal structures formed from planar dielectrics over a configurable platform for engineering strong light-matter coupling, which is beyond traditional settings of cavity QED and waveguides.

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Awards, Editors, and Women in Optics and Photonics

By Pedro Vallejo-Ramirez | Posted: 21 October 2014

Today was quite an eventful day at FiO! A plenary session starring the 2014 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, a plethora of awards for students and renowned members, a networking event with the editors of major science journals, and a talk on the Role of women and minorities in Optics and Photonics were the highlights of the day.

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Young leaders in Optics: Find your passions, ask the right questions, and pursue them!

By Pedro Vallejo-Ramirez | Posted: 19 October 2014

Today at the 2014 Student Leadership Conference we had an excellent talk by Professor Alain Aspect from the Institut D’Optique in France on following your passions in life, even when it’s a risky choice.
Professor Aspect’s passions were the basic concepts in physics, and he led his life choices to pursue this passion without regrets. He emphasized the importance of prioritizing your interests over job perks, financial rewards, or scientific accolades. Identify your passions, and delve deeply in them; when you pursue them great things will ensue.

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FiO / LS 2014 offers a "Smorgasbord" of Outstanding Topics

By Shamsul Arafin | Posted: 7 October 2014

I am really amazed at the number of FiO / LS 2014 topics that will be covered, ranging from Optical Design and Instrumentation to Optics in Biology and Medicine to Optics in Information Processing to Integrated Photonics. Each specific topic has been further divided into many relevant subtopics, highlighting the cutting-edge research and recent breakthroughs in optics and laser sciences by bringing together world-class researcher and scientists.

Among several sessions in Laser Science category, I am particularly excited about the Semiconductor Nanooptics invited talks. More specifically, the invited talk titled as Ultrashort-pulse Generation Using VECSELs and MIXSELs by Prof. Ursula Keller from ETH Zürich, Switzerland will highlight the latest results on high-power ultrafast semiconductor lasers based on optically-pumped VECSELs and MIXSELs. She will also discuss how power scaling with ps and fs pulses as well as with the excellent noise performance makes this type of semiconductor lasers highly attractive for many real-world applications.

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Groundbreaking Research, an Old Western Banquet, and Observatory tours—FiO is full of surprises!

By Pedro Vallejo-Ramirez | Posted: 2 October 2014

The College of Optical Sciences at the University of Arizona has outlined a series of events headlining FiO in the celebration of 50 years of Optical Sciences at the U of A.

What does this mean for you? Plenty of research symposia, an old school western banquet, and Observatory tours! Time to take advantage of these excellent opportunities to interact with your colleagues, network with some new ones, have delicious food, and hear about cutting-edge research to broaden the spectrum of your current optics knowledge.

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A week in “The Optics Valley”

By Pedro Vallejo Ramirez | Posted: 13 September 2014

As you begin to prepare for an amazing trip to the warm, sunny Tucson, you might wonder what kind of activities you can do outside the conference to clear your head and explore the “Optics Valley”. As I mentioned in my previous post, Tucson is an exceptional venue with many opportunities for thrill-seekers and outdoors lovers, as well as for those attendees looking to relax and hang loose.

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Plenary Talks in FiO/LS 2014: Combination of Applied and Fundamental Research

By Shamsul Arafin | Posted: 3 September 2014

Keynote Talks during the plenary session by the internationally-recognized spotlight speakers are one of the most important events in a technical conference. Like every year, FiO/LS 2014  will be offering two informative and inspiring research talks to its conference attendees.

Prof. Rebecca Richards-Kortum from Rice University, USA will give the first plenary talk on “Point-of-Care Diagnostics for Low-Resource Settings”. Personally, I am really looking forward to attending this presentation because this talk will feature applied-research efforts made to ensure the survival of the humanity as-a-whole. In particular, this talk will describe efforts to develop appropriate high­-performance, low-cost biophotonics technologies to meet health needs in low-resource settings.

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Are You Ready to Push the Frontiers?

By Pedro Vallejo Ramirez | Posted: 25 August 2014

Hey Everyone!

Let me open your scientific appetite by outlining a few talks that spark my interest at FiO/LS 2014!

My name is Pedro, I am from Panama, and I’m an optical engineering student from the University of Rochester. I work with Professor Wayne Knox and Professor Julie Bentley in the design of an acoustic lens to be used in photo-acoustic imaging for prostate cancer detection.

FiO/LS brings together two outstanding meetings of scientists and professionals that showcase the foremost discoveries in optics and laser technologies from all over the globe. This is an excellent opportunity to learn about cutting-edge research in optics and photonics, to engage in fascinating scientific discussions, and to network and have a great time with your colleagues and peers.

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FiO/LS 2014: The best in optics and laser science

By Shamsul Arafin | Posted: 13 August 2014

Hello Optics and Photonics Community! My name is Shamsul Arafin. I will be working as one of the official conference bloggers for the FiO/LS 2014, taking place on October 19-23.This will be my first time blogging and attending the FiO/LS which I am really excited about. Currently, I am a postdoctoral research scholar at UCLA, leading the work on heteroepitaxial growth of GaAs to integrate highly efficient light sources on silicon.. 

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Nano-scale artistic work – Ultra-fine 3D structures crafted by lasers

By By Frank Kuo | Posted: 10 October 2013

Like 3D printing, nanoscale structures can be created by making a 2D slice at a time, and stacking slices together from bottom up carefully. A mature technology called laser direct writing (DLW) has been the workhouse in this field. Utilizing an ultrafast femto- or picosecond laser to induce multiphoton absorption of the photoresist in solution is the key principle (Figure 1, top). Since it is a multiphoton process, the polymerization will happen only at the focal point of the laser, even the focal point is embedded deep in the solution. With this “point construction capability”, you are actually free to build up any kind of structure. The resolution, or the pixel size (voxel) is defined by how tight you can focus the light beam.

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Very Sensible Fiber

By by Dominic Siriani | Posted: 10 October 2013

…perhaps the last bad title pun you’ll have to suffer for FiO/LS 2013. Today was the Symposium on Advanced Distributed Optical Fiber Sensor Systems. In a previous post, I wrote a little bit about these fiber sensors. In really brief review, they work on the principle that fibers scatter light (Rayleigh, Raman, Brillouin…), this scattering is sensitive to perturbations (stresses, heating…), and so changes in the scattered return signal translate to sensing an environmental change. So today I got a taste of a little bit more detail about the challenges and advances in the field.

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A Day of Data

By By Dominic Siriani | Posted: 9 October 2013

So it seems the theme of my day today was ways to address size and energy bottlenecks in data centers. I’ve thoroughly had it drilled into my head that the real scale of interest is on the interconnect level, between chips and even on chips. As pointed out in an excellent tutorial by David Miller of Stanford University, the parasitic capacitance of electronic lines results in a large energy consumption, in fact much larger than the logic operations being performed by the CMOS itself. So this is where photonics can really save the day.

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Too fast to capture? Not a problem any more – Observing and controlling the electron dynamics using ultrafast X-ray and attosecond lasers

By By Frank Kuo | Posted: 9 October 2013

An exciting technique generates shock waves and attracts followers. However, for a technique to actually fly high, it has to be applicable to exploring the scientific unknowns. The thirst of the unknown then feeds the desire of having even better techniques. This mutual and healthy interaction paves the way of scientific advance and can be seen in many of today’s technical sessions.

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Ultracompact transparent conducting oxide and graphene based plasmonic modulator

By by Howard Lee | Posted: 9 October 2013

Special guest post during FiO/LS 2013 from the Nanophotonics Technical Group

To develop future hybrid photonic/plasmonic integrated nanocircuits, an efficient, ultracompact, ultrafast and low energy consumption modulator is one of the required components. Prof. Volker Sorger from the George Washington University presented a study on a transparent conducting oxide (TCO) based modulator. He showed that a silicon coupled TCO modulator achieves a modulation depth of 5dB and 20dB with a device length of 5um and 20um, respectively. The modulator has a broadband wavelength response (1.2um-2um) and can potentially be operated with high speed and low energy consumption (<100 fJ/bit). 

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Plasmonics for THz waves, a ultra-compact active platform.

By By Zhimin Shi | Posted: 8 October 2013

Special guest post during FiO/LS 2013 from the Nanophotonics Technical Group

Jerrett Vella from Wyle Aerospace group and AFRL introduced an ultracompact plasmonic modulator for Terahertz modulation, during which modulation up to 130 dB for the first time using a 15 um active area, which is 20 times smaller than the operation wavelength at 300 um. 

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And That’s Why It’s Not Called Sili-Can’t…

By By Dom Siriani | Posted: 8 October 2013

It’s called silicon. Day two, pun two (a stretch, I know), and this is my second apology for the bad jokes. But, as before, I can justify it with a great theme: silicon and its continued expansion into the realm of photonics.

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A 2013 Plenary Talk with a fine twist of history, technology, & encouraging perspective.

By By Frank Kuo | Posted: 8 October 2013

Conference has limited amount of time for each call, so most of the technical talks are highly specialized. As a result, you need to be familiar with the topic or extremely sharp in picking up the ideas in order to grasp the content immediately. This is definitely not the case in Professor Murnane’s presentation. She started by carefully turning the clock back to the beginning for the century, revisited the idea behind the lasers proposed by Einstein (such as stimulated emission, population inversion), and naturally explained why table top X-ray laser is a challenging topic to tackle even today.

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