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  • OFC/NFOEC 2010 Spotlights Nobel Prize Winner
Mar 2010
SAN DIEGO, March 10, 2010 – Featuring technology from around the world and every sector of optical communications, the Optical Fiber Communication Conference and Exposition and the National Fiber Optic Engineers Conference (OFC/NFOEC) is a place where people from all corners of the world can come together to meet and greet, teach and learn, make connections and move business forward from March 21-25 at the San Diego Convention Center.

San Diego Convention Center.

This year’s event has been dedicated to Dr. Charles Kao, winner of the 2009 Nobel Prize for Physics. Now retired from Standard Telecommunication Laboratories (STL, now a division of Nortel) in the UK and Chinese University of Hong Kong, Kao won the award for his achievements concerning the transmission of light in fibers for optical communication. He is known in the industry as the “Father of Fiber Optics” for his work to determine a way to make light travel long distances over optical glass fiber, which has become the backbone for modern high-speed optical communications today.

Kao will be honored at the OFC/NFOEC plenary and awards session on March 23, with a special address by Tingye Li, retired AT&T research scientist and lightwave communications pioneer. Additionally, a special symposium on Kao’s life and the influence of his work will be held March 24 and the Exhibit Hall will feature a video tribute to Kao in its video theater. The video, to be shown daily at noon March 23-25, will include an interview with Kao in which he discusses how he and his staff at STL and ITT Corp. researched potential uses of optical fibers as a communications technology and the challenges they encountered.

As the premier international optical communications event, OFC/NFOEC 2010 provides a comprehensive view of the industry through live demonstrations, interactive displays, a plenary session, peer-reviewed technical programming, workshops, short courses, a three-day exhibition of more than 500 companies showcasing new products and technologies, and special focus sessions, including the three-day Market Watch and the daylong keynote Service Provider Summit.

Drawing the largest audience at the conference, the plenary session on March 23 will include three speakers in the field of optics and telecommunications who will address the audience with the challenges for new generation networks, information about cutting-edge technologies, assessments of the industry trends and a unique international perspective of the industry’s future. Speakers will include Brian Herlihy, president at Mauritius, Philippe Keryer, executive vice president at Alcatel-Lucent and president at Carrier Product Group, and Hideo Miyahara, president at NICT.

Building upon last year’s rump session, OFC 2010 will hold a new rump session devoted to the question: “Do advanced optical techniques have a place in future optical communications systems, or does the emergence of coherent detection and sophisticated digital signal processing obviate the need for such techniques?” Moderated by Robert Tkach of Alcatel-Lucent, the event session will take place March 23. It will include a spontaneous discussion among the audience members of the question. No speakers have been scheduled to attend.

The three-day market watch will include a series of panel sessions to engage the applications and business communities in the field of optical communications. Topics of discussion to be held by esteemed guest speakers in the industry, research and investment communities include, “State of the Optical Industry,” “Implications of Wireless Network Evolution: Wireless Backhaul and Beyond,” “Benefits and Tradeoffs of Photonic Integration—Functional or Hybrid?,” “Packet Optical Migration—The Case for Multilayer Transport Equipment,” and “Reinventing Carrier Networks for 100G: Taking it to the Next Level.”

Workshops, panel discussions and tutorials will be offered at the conference to provide attendees with an interactive learning environment on current areas of interest in the industry. These include optoelectronic devices, core and access networks, optical processing and analog subsystems, digital transmission systems, optical networks and services, and network technologies.

Short courses covering a broad range of topics at a variety of educational levels will also be offered at OFC/NFOEC. Taught by industry experts, the course topics include fibers and optical propagation effects, optoelectronic devices, core and access networks, and network technologies. Continuing Education Units are available at these courses.

A job fair will also be offered on-site and a database will be available online until mid-April. Past employer participants have included Luna Innovations, Northrop Grumman Corp., Digital Lightwave, JDSU and Encore Corp. Additionally a career workshop will be available for interested attendees.

OFC/NFOEC is managed by the Optical Society of America (OSA) and co-sponsored by OSA, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers/Communications Society (IEEE/ComSoc) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Photonics Society. Telcordia Technologies Inc. is acting as a non-financial technical co-sponsor.

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