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  • Is It Your Time to Shine?

Sep 2013
Karen A. Newman, Group Publisher,

The Prism Awards – the annual international competition recognizing cutting-edge products that break conventional ideas, solve problems and improve life through photonics – is accepting entries for the 2014 competition. But hurry; time is running out. Visit for details and the entry form.

Because their products are the best and brightest, Prism Awards finalists get plenty of media attention. Managing Editor Laura Marshall and Senior Editor Melinda Rose previewed last year’s finalists in our January issue. Among the three finalists in the Life Sciences and Biophotonics category was Femtolasers Produktions GmbH of Vienna, which was recognized for its Integral core ultrafast, portable Ti:sapphire turnkey laser. Weighing less than 4 kg, it combines a femtosecond light source with <20-fs laser pulses for applications in biophotonics, such as multiphoton microscopy, OCT and terahertz imaging or spectroscopy.

Another finalist, Olympus America of Massachusetts, entered its Scaleview microscope objectives, which allow biologists to see deep into the brain to better map it and understand its functions. The two microscope objectives, when used with a specific reagent, enable bright imaging up to 4 mm and 8 mm deep; both are designed to boost the capability of multiphoton and confocal microscopy.

And the 2013 category winner was Raman-based disease detection from Verisante Technology of Canada. Its Aura product can quickly image biochemical changes noninvasively using a near-IR laser beam, allowing doctors to characterize the biochemical constituents of the skin based on molecular vibrations, instead of using visual characteristics to assess skin lesions.

If you have recently introduced an innovative light-based technology or product that fits in the Life Sciences and Biophotonics category, or any of the 10 other categories, we hope you’ll enter the Prism Awards for Photonics Innovation. The awards will be presented by SPIE and Photonics Media, publisher of BioPhotonics, at a gala event held during SPIE’s Photonics West. We hope to see you there.

Cover Story

Smartphones have opened up the world, in a sense, and opened a world of opportunity to maximize mobile technologies to benefit planet and people. Device modifications and applications that will bring oximetry to operating rooms that currently do without it, and imaging and sensing for mobile health applications also present new challenges.

Among the concerns, according to our cover story, by news editor Gary Boas, are funding these new technologies and navigating regulations. Also vitally important is an understanding of how the new technologies will fit into existing infrastructure and the sociocultural impact they could have. To discover how some companies are charting a course in these new waters, read the entire article, beginning on page 23.

Be sure to check out the other features in this issue, too – right after you submit your Prism Awards entry.

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