Transforming the future

A pavilion on the exhibit floor of the recent SPIE conference in San Diego, CA showcased consumer-level applications of photonics technology as well as several projects bringing energy-efficient lighting and cooking capabilities to the developing world. Presented under the rubric of Photonics for a Better World, the pavilion included displays of cars and solar-powered flashlights, both using LED lighting technology. The growing adoption of solid-state lighting, which has now moved well beyond commercial settings and into the home, is creating significant manufacturing challenges for makers of light-emitting diodes with consequent opportunities for photonics-based solutions. Emission wavelength and power both affect LED production yields so a variety of techniques have been developed to address them, ranging from binning (sorting) to LED designs aimed at improving the light extraction efficiency. In both cases, optical metrology can help improve the yield and product quality of high-brightness LEDs (see page 35).

Away from the consumer–but with a significant impact on them–is the seemingly relentless quest for faster communications networks. Increased capacity is the goal of next-generation coherent communications systems while preserving optical reach and agility on the existing fiber plant, but the optimization of fiber designs for these systems is only just beginning (see page 47). And at the backplane level, parallel-optics transmitters based on arrays of vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs) are used to accommodate the growing data rates. At these high rates, individual monitoring of every VCSEL in the array offers systems designers new capabilities (see page 58).

Researchers worldwide continue to explore the unique ability of ultrafast pulses to alter materials without collateral damage. In Europe femtosecond pulses are being used to create microsystems, like the tiny flowers shown on our cover, by transforming the internal structure of glass–potentially creating future opportunities for system integration at the microscale (see page 13).

Stephen G. Anderson
Associate Publisher
Editor in Chief
stevega@pennwell.com

 

More Laser Focus World Current Issue Articles
More Laser Focus World Archives Issue Articles

50 YEARS OF SOLID-STATE LASERS


A long way from the ruby laser

Most Popular Articles

Webcasts

Ray Optics Simulations with COMSOL Multiphysics

The Ray Optics Module can be used to simulate electromagnetic wave propagation when the wavelength is much smaller than the smallest geometric entity in the ...

Multichannel Spectroscopy: Technology and Applications

This webcast, sponsored by Hamamatsu, highlights some of the photonic technology used in spectroscopy, and the resulting applications.

Handheld Spectrometers

Spectroscopy is a powerful and versatile tool that traditionally often required a large and bulky instrument. The combination of compact optics and modern pa...

Fracking, climate change, and lasers:  new tools to reduce fugitive methane emissions

This webcast, sponsored by Hamamatsu Corporation, covers recent developments and field deployments of compact quantum-cascade-laser (QCL)-based methane senso...
White Papers

Narrow-line fiber-coupled modules for DPAL pumping

A new series of fiber coupled diode laser modules optimized for DPAL pumping is presented, featur...

Accurate LED Source Modeling Using TracePro

Modern optical modeling programs allow product design engineers to create, analyze, and optimize ...

Optical Isolators Improve Engraving Performance of Pulsed Fiber Lasers

The deleterious effects of back reflections on pulsed fiber lasers used in marking and engraving ...
Technical Digests

ADHESIVES, SEALANTS, AND COATINGS: Solutions for optical technologies

A vast array of optical systems of various types and degrees of complexity require the use of adh...

WAVELENGTH-SWEPT LASERS: Dispersion-tuned fiber laser sweeps over a 140 nm range for OCT

By eliminating the use of mechanical tunable filters and instead tuning by intensity-modulation i...

Keeping pace with developments in photonic materials research

For demanding or custom spectroscopy solutions, care must be taken in selecting and integrating a...

HIGH-POWER FIBER LASERS: Working in the kilowatt regime

High-power materials-processing fiber lasers are available in an increasing variety of forms, as ...

Click here to have your products listed in the Laser Focus World Buyers Guide.
Social Activity
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Copyright © 2007-2014. PennWell Corporation, Tulsa, OK. All Rights Reserved.PRIVACY POLICY | TERMS AND CONDITIONS