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SPIE Co-Sponsors Winter College on Optics

BELLINGHAM, Wash., and TRIESTE, Italy, March 12, 2014 — The Winter College on Optics brought the fundamentals of photonics to the forefront recently, as students from around the world learned about everything from optics research and technology transfer to biomedicine and renewable energy.

The 2014 program, co-sponsored by several organizations including SPIE and the International Commission for Optics (ICO), was held at the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) last month. Program directors hailed from institutions in Spain, Italy, Canada and Mexico, among other locations.

Students and faculty from 45 countries participated in the program, the overall theme of which centered around Fundamentals of Photonics: Theory, Device and Applications. The work focused on topics such as electromagnetic optics, integrated optics, computing, optoelectronics, waveguide platforms and photonic circuits.

Part of the Winter College included the Laser, Atomic and Molecular Physics (LAMP) program, which provided participants the opportunity to share their work. From these presentations, several SPIE Best Paper prize winners were chosen:
  • Aminat Oyiza Suleiman, from Stellenbosch University in South Africa, received first prize for “ Observation of Structural Dynamics of 1T-TiSe2 Using Femtosecond Electron Diffraction.”
  • Second prize went to Dainius Virganavicius, from Kaunas University of Technology in Lithuania, for research on “Formation of Regular Structures Employing Holographic Lithography Technique.”
  • Nelson Alonso Correa Rojas, from the Universidad Nacional Sede Medellín in Colombia, was awarded third place for “Multifunctional Optical Tweezers System.”
  • Nithyanandan Kanagaraj, from Pondicherry University in India, garnered fourth prize for “A Colloquium on the Ultrashort Nonlinear Pulse Propagation through Optical Fibers: Modulational Instability and Supercontinuum Generation.”
Also featured during the program were the awards for the 2014 ICO/ICTP Gallieno Denardo Prize, which recognizes young researchers from developing countries for their work. The two winners were María Florencia Pascual Winter from the Instituto de Nanociencia y Nanotecnología - Centro Atómico Bariloche in Argentina, and John Fredy Barrera Ramírez from the Instituto de Física Universidad de Antioquia, Medellín, in Colombia.

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