Nonlinear Optics Technical Group Workshop
The OSA Nonlinear Optics Technical Group (OL-TG) hosted a mini-workshop on “Future Directions in Nonlinear Optics” at Frontiers in Optics 2015 in San Jose this past October. This was the first organized event of the OL-TG and the event was “standing room only”, with 40 members RSVPing and over 57 attending.
The event centered on a panel hosted by Joe Touch (USC/ISI), OL-TG Technical Events Co-Chair, with an introduction by David Borlaug (UCLA), OL-TG Chair. Panelists included Jason Pelc (HP Labs), Claudio Conti (University Sapienza), Alex Gaeta (Columbia Univ.), and Victor Brasch (EPFL). The presentations covered a variety of emerging issues in nonlinear optics, including phase signaling for digital logic, multilevel logic, solitons, exotic materials, and microresonator frequency combs. The panel as a group discussed what “nonlinear optics” meant to them and the most important issues currently being explored.
Nonlinear optics had many meanings, including exploring new materials, generation of new frequencies, exploiting the properties of microresonators, and spatiotemporal relationships.
The panel discussed future areas of device integration and new materials, spatiotemporal control, complexity, X-Ray and UV frequencies, supercontinuum generation, solitons, and the use of nonlinear optics for spectroscopy and communication for the masses. The use of phase was viewed as a double-edged sword, with significant challenges but interesting opportunities. The audience raised the issue of power, e.g., how to generate high-power sources, which the panel felt offered interesting engineering challenges but might not be needed as an enabler of new approaches. Other issues the panelists wished were receiving more attention included material and device production process challenges, fiber solitons, exotic materials (e.g., silicon nitride), and four-wave mixing.
Overall, it was a very lively discussion that filled every available seat. The meeting concluded with a brief period for “networking over dessert.” Select photos from the workshop are now available and can be viewed online