A series of lectures sponsored by The National Science Foundation (NSF) directorate for mathematical and physical sciences will help promote a national discussion of issues that scientists expect to shape their research in the coming years, the NSF said. The lectures, which will begin this month, will be held at NSF, 4201 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, Va. Topics will include robotics, energy, teaching physics, nanoscale structures, space and biomaterials. For a schedule, visit: www.nsf.gov/od/lpa/events_list.htm . . . Medical laser product manufacturer PhotoMedex, based in Montgomeryville, Pa., announced it has acquired, through an asset purchase agreement, exclusive worldwide rights to certain proprietary technology from Stern Laser srl, of Italy. The technology is expected to expand PhotoMedex's products used in dermatology, and is the subject of a patent application filed in the European Union and a pending US application. . . . Ultratech Inc., a San Jose, Calif., supplier of lithography and laser-processing systems used to make semiconductors and nanotechnology devices, announced it has received 300-mm advanced packaging lithography system orders from three semiconductor manufacturers in Japan for use in solder-bump applications. The company said delivery is expected by the end of the year.