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Photonics Spectra
Since 1967, Photonics Spectra magazine has defined the science and industry of photonics, providing both technical and practical information for every aspect of the global industry and promoting an international dialogue among the engineers, scientists and end users who develop, commercialize and buy photonics products. Stay current with a FREE subscription to the digital or print edition.

EDITORIAL COMMENT
Latest Issue
Dec 2016

A Season for Disruption

MICHAEL D. WHEELER, MANAGING EDITOR, michael.wheeler@photonics.com
An Apple watch, a Samsung smartphone, an LG television, a virtual-reality headset. All are likely to make the short list of the most sought-after consumer electronics this holiday season.

Mike WheelerSoon these and other luxury consumer goods are likely to include organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays, prized for their crystal clear visual characteristics and compatibility with flexible and transparent materials. Industry watchers are so enamored with OLEDs that many say it’s not a matter of “if” OLEDs are likely to displace conventional LEDs, but rather “when.” See “OLEDs Step In Where Design Matters” (read article).

Market disruption is a theme in “Medical Lasers Cut and Heal” (read article). The medical market was one of the first to embrace lasers, with the first surgeries conducted in the years following Theodore H. Maiman’s introduction of the ruby laser in 1960. But most uses were restricted to ablation, cutting or tissue removal. That’s now changing with emerging applications including bioresponse and drug delivery, made possible by ever-more sophisticated systems that incorporate multiple wavelengths, and feature innovations in power.

The ongoing improvements in lasers across industry has spurred the development of new laser-specific optical coatings. But to achieve the optimal performance, a deeper understanding of the substrates available, their attributes and the various deposition techniques can save costs and headaches. See “No One-Size-Fits-All Approach to Selecting Optical Coatings,” by Edmund Optics’ Stefaan Vandendriessche (read article).

From assessing optical coatings we move to assessing light sources — particularly LEDs and optical vortex beams, each with unique phase distribution properties that are difficult to measure using conventional interferometry. Optocraft GmbH’s Johannes Pfund, Ralf Dorn and Christian Brock examine the use of Shack-Hartmann wavefront sensors in “Wavefront Sensing Under Unique Lighting Conditions” (read article).

Also in this issue, Manijeh Razeghi and her colleagues at the Center for Quantum Devices at Northwestern University detail recent advances in terahertz optical frequency comb operations that, along with mode selecting and phase-matching mechanisms, have made single-mode THz emission at high powers possible. See “Breakthroughs Bring THz Spectroscopy, Sensing Closer to Mainstream” (read article).

And finally, for many in the industry, the year truly begins with Photonics West in San Francisco. For an insider’s look at what’s in store at this year’s show, don’t miss Senior Editor Justine Murphy’s show preview on (read article).

Enjoy the issue!
Karen Newman Group Publisher Karen Newman has had a career in business-to-business and association publishing, much of it spent covering technical, scientific and life sciences subjects.
Mike Wheeler Michael D. Wheeler is managing editor of Photonics Spectra and EuroPhotonics. In addition, he is responsible for the editorial direction of BioPhotonics and Industrial Photonics.
Justine Murphy Senior Editor Justine Murphy is a multiple award-winning journalist who brings more than 15 years of experience to her role at Photonics Media.
James Schlett James Schlett is the editor of BioPhotonics and Industrial Photonics. He is also an author and award-winning business reporter.
 
Hank Hogan Contributing editor Hank Hogan holds a Bachelor of Science degree in physics from the University of Texas at Austin. Hogan worked in the semiconductor industry and now writes about science and technology.
Marie Freebody Contributing editor Marie Freebody is a free-lance science and technology journalist with a master’s degree in physics and a concentration in nuclear astrophysics from the University of Surrey in England.
Valerie Coffey Science writer Valerie C. Coffey holds a bachelor’s degree in physics and a master’s in astronomy. She has covered optics, photonics, physics and astronomy for a variety of industry and academic publications since 2000.
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