Winter weather delayed the arrival of some exhibitors but didn't dent attendance or enthusiasm for Photonics West 2005 this week, SPIE organizers reported. Exhibit halls filled after opening Tuesday, and the mood was "upbeat and positive," reported Stacy Crockett, media relations specialist. On Sunday, BiOS (Biomedical Optics), one of four international symposia at Photonics West 2005, was "bigger and better than ever," and its growth was the talk of exhibitors, Crockett said. BiOS Hot Topics was standing-room only. "The buzz was palpable," she said. The SPIE Welcome Reception, held Monday at the San Jose Museum of Art, was also a success. "Attendees were all talkative and having fun. There were students mingling with retirees mingling with salespeople. The food and the drink were both first class," Crockett said. The SPIEWorks Career Fair in Parkside Hall has been constantly full of students and employers, she reported, artist Christopher Ries of Schott Glass attracted a crowd with a talk about his hand-sculpted crystal glass, and the Focused Poster Session in the Imperial and Regency Ballrooms at the Fairmont brought in hundreds. SPIE Director Bruce Tromberg, a professor with the Beckman Laser Institute at the University of California/Irvine, recognized three new Fellows of the society at an awards presentation Monday. Valery Tuchin and Lihong Wang were unable to attend, but new SPIE Director Katarina Svanberg accepted her Fellow certificate in front of the Hot Topics crowd. Tromberg and Arjun Yodh, professor of science, physics and astronomy at the University of Pennsylvania (U Penn), presented SPIE's Lifetime Achievement Award to Britton Chance. Chance is a leader in transforming theoretical science into useful biomedical and clinical applications. Examples of his pioneering contributions to fundamental biomedical science are his discovery of numerous enzyme-substrate compounds, World War II development of computers for radar, the elucidation of the fundamental principles of control of bioenergetics and metabolism, the first human subject study using 31P NMR (phosphorous nuclear magnetic resonance) spectroscopy and, more recently, optical spectroscopy and imaging of the human brain and breast. Byer HonoredSymposium chairs M. Edward Motamedi and Rajeshuni Rameshan introduced Marilyn Gorsuch, who read the citation for new SPIE Fellow Hong Liu. 2005 SPIE President Malgorzata Kuwinska presented the Fellow pin and certificate to the honoree. Twenty-five Circle of Excellence awards were presented at Spectra Magazine's 17th annual awards ceremony, held Monday evening. Robert L. Byer received the Distinction in Photonics award, honoring individual achievement. Byer is a Stanford University professor of physics, director of the Hansen Experimental Physics Laboratory and co-director of the Stanford Photonics Research Center. He has conducted research and taught classes in lasers and nonlinear optics at Stanford University since 1969 and has made numerous contributions to laser science and technology, including the demonstration of the first tunable visible parametric oscillator, the development of the Q-switched unstable resonator Nd:YAG laser, remote sensing using tunable infrared sources and precision spectroscopy using Coherent Anti Stokes Raman Scattering (CARS). Current research includes the development of nonlinear optical materials and laser diode pumped solid state laser sources for applications to gravitational wave detection and to laser particle acceleration. Optoelectonics Symposium Chair Gernot Pomrenke and Co-chair Seppo Hakanen led the Opto Plenary Session and Awards Ceremony Tuesday. Best Paper 2004 Award, for "High-power, room-temperature, continuous-wave operation of quantum cascade lasers Gas/MBE," was accepted by Allan J. Evans on behalf of the Northwestern University authors. New 2005 SPIE Fellows Shibin Jiang, Elhange Lee, Paras N. Prasad and Nasser Peyghambarian were also recognized at the ceremony.