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Coming Soon: The NEW

Inaugural Photonics Spectra Conference to Highlight Innovations in Lasers, Optics, More

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The online event, scheduled for Jan. 19-22, includes 70-plus sessions offered by international experts and leading photonics companies around the world.

The first Photonics Spectra Conference is set for Jan. 19-22, featuring presentations in four tracks: lasers, optics, biomedical imaging, and spectroscopy. Each day-long program will feature a keynote address and sessions that highlight the latest in applications, industry trends, and technological developments, along with expert insights from across academia and industry.

The program is available at The event is free, and online registration is now open.  

“For more than 50 years, Photonics Spectra has connected end users and practitioners in photonics with coverage of the progress that has driven the evolution of our industry,” said Tom Laurin, president of Photonics Media. “This conference represents a new way for us to bring innovative content to industry professionals, educators, enthusiasts, and the industry at large, in keeping with our larger editorial mission.

“An online summit represents the natural next step for us, as our webinar program has steadily grown each year, having hosted 300 events in the last six years. Organizing this form of content in a thoughtful, cohesive way makes sense; the events of 2020 simply accelerated this effort.”

Spectroscopy track features notables, rising stars alike

Ji-Xin Cheng, Theodore Moustakas Chair Professor in Photonics and Optoelectronics at Boston University and winner of the 2019 Ellis R. Lippincott Award, kicks off the Spectroscopy track with his keynote address, “Seeing Life at the Molecule Level via Advanced Chemical Microscopy.” Cheng will discuss spectroscopic-enabled visualization of molecules and biological structures inside living systems, and the expanding role of molecular spectroscopy in discovering molecular signatures in diseases.

The track, curated in partnership with the executive board of the Society for Applied Spectroscopy (SAS), includes several talks on the spectroscopic-enabled characterization of microplastics, as well as the use of spectroscopy in on-scene forensic investigation. Presenting companies include HORIBA, PerkinElmer, IRsweep, and Applied Spectra.

Past and present members of the Society for Applied Spectroscopy presidential chain who are scheduled to present include former President Ellen Miseo and current President Richard Crocombe.

Miseo — in her talk, “Designing Photonic Devices for Untrained Users” — will speak about the issue of food quality and how miniaturized-optics spectroscopic technology can help determine the freshness and origins of our food. Crocombe, principal at Crocombe Spectroscopic Consulting, will explore the subject of device miniaturization and portability — examining, among other topics, whether current manufacturers are really optimizing their instruments for all users.

Lasers in applications from e-mobility to optogenetics

Chunlei Guo, full professor at the University of Rochester Institute of Optics, will present the keynote address for the Laser program. Guo has pioneered research using femtosecond laser interactions to develop a range of highly functionalized surfaces, including black and colored metals. His work with superhydrophilic and superhydrophobic surfaces has contributed to initiatives aimed at achieving clean water solutions, including an alternative clean water-dependent sanitation project that received funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

In his keynote, Guo will showcase developments in femtosecond laser micro- and nanopatterning, including formation dynamics and drastically altered surface functionalities.

The Laser program will also feature presenters from Coherent, TRUMPF, Hamamatsu, SPI Lasers, Edmund Optics, and Ophir (MKS Instruments). Sessions will cover lasers in industrial and manufacturing applications, such as microwelding, gas monitoring, and lidar.

Fiber lasers, which hold numerous and wide-ranging applications in the manufacturing chains of batteries, automobiles, and more, will be in the spotlight when SPI Lasers' Jack Gabzdyl presents on emerging fiber laser technology in e-mobility applications. Aerospace and defense — specifically, lidar-driven trends in remote detection and measurement — are subjects of a session that independent consultant Nikolaus Schmitt will deliver. Schmitt will examine the effectiveness of existing laser and detector technologies for long-range operation in all-weather situations.

The Lasers track will also cover topics in medical science and imaging. Coherent Inc.’s Marco Arrigoni will discuss developments in multiphoton imaging. The session will introduce newer imaging techniques and advancements in compact and high-power fiber laser technology that are enabling the study of thousands of neurons in real time.

The first ever Photonics Spectra Conference, launchign Jan. 19, features four tracks: lasers, optics, biomedical imaging, and spectroscopy. Track keynotes, from left:Ji-Xin Cheng (spectroscopy); Chunlei Guo (lasers); Aydogan Ozcan (biomedical imaging); and Jessica DeGroote Nelson (optics).

The first ever Photonics Spectra Conference features four tracks: Lasers, Optics, Biomedical Imaging, and Spectroscopy. Track keynotes, from left: Ji-Xin Cheng (Spectroscopy); Chunlei Guo (Lasers); Aydogan Ozcan (Biomedical Imaging); and Jessica DeGroote Nelson (Optics).

Ozcan to keynote Biomedical Imaging track

The summit’s Biomedical Imaging track features webinar presentations on applications and technologies that are invigorating research in biophotonics. PhotoniCare, Dover Motion, Physik Instrumente, and Olympus are among the companies participating in sessions. Aydogan Ozcan — Chancellor's Professor and the Volgenau Chair for Engineering Innovation at UCLA and an HHMI Professor with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute — will deliver the keynote address, presenting on next-generation optical microscopy that is leading a movement toward deep learning and machine learning for biomedical imaging. 

Additional industry leaders scheduled to present include Juergen Popp, scientific director of the Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology and chair for physical chemistry at the Friedrich-Schiller University Jena; and Adam Wax, founder of Lumedica, and Duke University professor of biomedical engineering.

Emerging techniques such as optical coherence tomography (with sessions by Adam Wax and Laura Selmic of The Ohio State University), illumination, and photoacoustic imaging (with a session by Manojit Pramanik of Nanyang Tech University), and AR microscopy (with sessions by Gabe Siegel and Dan Regelman from Augmentiqs) are at the fore of the program. Popp, editor-in-chief of the Journal of Biophotonics, will report on various innovative technological concepts that are moving optical approaches closer to clinical use. With particular focus on Raman spectroscopy, Popp will explore how spectroscopic methods are combining with optical modalities to deliver multimodal approaches to clinical settings.

From IR optics to freeform surfaces

Presentations in the Optics track will cover topics in metrology, colorimetry, interferometry, and more. Optimax’s Jessica DeGroote Nelson will present the keynote, exploring science fiction prophecies that have become reality through trending optics applications.

Other sessions will be led by LaCroix Optics’ Kenny Rains, who will cover the prototyping process, considerations about material and coating types, and optimization for volume production; and Andrea Armani, the Ray Irani Chair in Engineering and Materials Science and professor of chemical engineering and materials science at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering, who will lead a session outlining her recent work in developing on-chip devices that incorporate nonlinear optical (NLO) small molecules. Armani’s presentation will look at specific examples of NLO small-molecule integrated resonators, including Raman lasers and all-optical switchable devices. 

The inaugural Photonics Spectra Conference starts on Tuesday, Jan. 19, and runs through Friday, Jan. 22. Registration is free for the event, which is offered exclusively online.

For more information and to register, visit

Photonics Spectra
Dec 2020
Research & TechnologyBusinessLasersOpticsBiophotonicsspectroscopybiomedical imagingIndustry EventsPhotonics SpectraPhotonics Spectra ConferenceFeatures

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