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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
Sep 2020

Putting optics into focus

DANIEL MCCARTHY, SENIOR EDITOR [email protected]
In its most practical form, photonics isn’t such a complicated industry. It has three basic components: the generation, manipulation, and detection of light. As an industry, we invest most of our attention in the manipulation part, which enables, enhances, and bridges the industry’s other pillar practices.

Without the ability to focus, diffract, reflect, transmit, or filter photons, we may all as well go home — and don’t expect to catch up on your binge watching when you get there. No optics? No internet, or television screens, or movie cameras. We’re all back to reading books and attending live daytime theater — those of us who don’t need glasses anyway.

Before this gets too scattered, my point is that whatever niche you occupy in this industry, optics — the parts and the practice — are what link you to everyone else. This is why Photonics Spectra traditionally dedicates its September issue to the topic of optics.

Given the scope of this topic, it can be a challenge to stay grounded while capturing the big picture — much like the ground-based giant telescope projects surveyed in our lead feature by science writer Val Coffey. An accompanying article, contributed by Nüvü Cameras, highlights the important advancements in adaptive optics that are furthering the mission-critical capabilities of these Earth-bound telescopes.

Next up, a feature from Element Six Technologies captures the finer points of using single-crystal diamond as a gain material for Raman lasers, allowing for greater power densities, more robust damage thresholds, and changeable wavelengths. Following this, the Ophir Optics Group at MKS Instruments reflects on the formulation, deposition, and benefits of antireflection coatings for high-power fiber lasers.

Contributing editor Hank Hogan is next in line with a feature exploring the finer points of how quantum photonic effects could improve the performance of sensors, atomic clocks, and spectrometers. Eckhardt Optics’ article follows with a discussion of how the venerable conoscope is finding new application as a metrology tool for 21st century technologies, in the same way that facial recognition, high-speed scatterometers, and virtual reality headsets are introducing new applications for the venerable conoscope.

Mike Wheeler
As editor-in-chief, Michael Wheeler oversees Photonics Media's editorial operations — spanning print, web, and podcasts. He also serves as editor of Vision Spectra, chronicling advancements in the rapidly expanding machine vision/inspection sector.
Dan McCarthy
Senior editor Dan McCarthy manages editorial content and production for Photonics Spectra. An award-winning writer and editor, he has communicated the progress and practical value of advanced technologies for over two decades.
Doug Farmer
Senior Editor Douglas Farmer has been a journalist for nearly 20 years, winning awards for health and education reporting. He has a master's degree in journalism from Ball State University. He is editor of EuroPhotonics and BioPhotonics magazines.
 
Robin Riley
Multimedia/Web Editor Robin Riley has 30+ years of experience in communications and marketing for a range of technical industries. She is a regular contributor to web content and social media, and organizes and produces custom and editorial webinars.
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.
Hank Hogan
Contributing Editor Hank Hogan holds a Bachelor of Science degree in physics from the University of Texas at Austin. He worked in the semiconductor industry and now writes about science and technology.
 
Marie Freebody
Contributing Editor Marie Freebody is a freelance science and technology journalist with a master’s degree in physics and a concentration in nuclear astrophysics from the University of Surrey in England.
Farooq Ahmed
Farooq Ahmed has covered the physical and biological sciences for over a decade. He has a bachelor's degree in biochemistry from Brown University and a Master of Fine Arts degree in writing from Columbia University.
 
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