April 2016

Interacting with the Next Generation of Scientists

By Martijn De Sterke, University of Sydney | Posted: 2 May 2016

Since it is a long flight from Sydney to India I decided to combine visits to two different student chapters in a single trip. Arriving in Kolkata late on a Wednesday evening, I spent the Thursday morning at the Central Glass and Ceramic Research Institute (CGCRI) in Kolkata, a very impressive organization,  and then on by train to Dhanbad, the location of the Indian School of Mines (ISM). Here I spent all of Friday, and then was at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur on the Monday and the Tuesday morning. Over the weekend the students at ISM showed me around in Gaya, one of the holy sites of Buddhism, and on the Sunday it took us most of the day to drive from Dhanbad to Kharagpur. The entire visit was very enjoyable with the students looking after me very well at every stage. 

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Enthusiastic Young Minds Create an Ecosystem of Learning

By OSA Student Chapter of Vilnius University | Posted: 28 April 2016

59th international conference for students of physics and natural sciences “Open Readings 2016” gathered more than 300 enthusiastic young minds in order to create an ecosystem of learning and sharing the experience. The conference took place on 15-18th of March in Vilnius, Lithuania and connected students from all over Europe working in a variety of thrilling topics: from optics and laser physics to the latest applications in biomedicine.

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Optical Enrichment Activity at Alomim School

By OSA TAU Student Chapter | Posted: 28 April 2016

The optical enrichment activity was conducted on 8 April 2016 as part of an open day at school to expose the students to different fields of interest. The students that attended the optical activity chose this activity out of other options available to them that day.
In this activity, we exposed the class to the white light wonders using the OSA Optics Suitcase and explained the motivation of our visit, to revel and to expose our attention to daily phenomena and to understand how it relates to the science and technology. We started with a short introduction on what is light, what we know about it, the students actively participated in the discussion and offered different types of light sources. We summarized this part by stating that light is an energy that has a source and that travels in space.

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Spark Your Dream - Celebrating OSA's Centennial

By Ningbo University OSA Student Chapter | Posted: 28 April 2016

Our chapter decided to organize a series of youth education activities named “Spark Your Dream” to celebrate the OSA’s 100th birthday. We wanted to impart our knowledge to help younger students in order to foster their interests in optics and science in general to broaden their horizon. We wanted to make the younger students understand what OSA has to offer through these activities.

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Awarding New Ideas

By OSA Student Chapter of Malaviya National Institute of Technology Jaipur | Posted: 27 April 2016

OSA Student Chapter of Malaviya National Institute of Technology Jaipur conducted a student oriented conference titled, 'OSA Young Student Congress on Photonic Technologies' on April 16-17, 2016. It was a one and a half day event which began in the afternoon of April 16 and ended in the evening of April 17. We received around 30 papers from students at our institute as well as from other institutions. The reviewing committee consisted of esteemed professors where they selected 15 papers for oral presentation and other 15 for poster presentation. The event started with a 30 minutes presentation on OSA and our student chapter, given by Mr. Abhishek Godbole, President of OSA Student Chapter, MNIT Jaipur. Then we had a Skype session with Mr. Sripadaraja of Sridutt Technologies who explained to the attendees about the Lumerical Simulation tool which is widely used for simulation and modeling of optical devices. Following the session, we had a poster presentation competition among the participants. Out of the 15 posters we received, two of them were awarded best posters and received a prize. On the second day, we began with a welcome note from our faculty advisor Dr. Ghanshyam Singh. Then we had four expert lectures each of 45 minutes. The lectures were on varied topics such as Optics/Photonics, document preparation using LaTeX, Optical Wireless Communication and Art of manuscript preparation and submission in reputed journals. It was a great learning experience for the participants as they got exposed to such varied and important topics. After that we organized a quiz competition for the participants. The questions were based on fiber optic communication and photonic devices. Around 40 students took part in the quiz and the top three were awarded a prize. Then we had oral presentations from the participants which were judged by esteemed Professors of MNIT Jaipur. Two of the top presenters were awarded a prize. This event was well received by the participants and was a great learning process for the organizers. Members of our student chapter gained a lot from organizing this event and we look forward to conduct such activities in future also. We are grateful to OSA for providing us the Centennial Special Events Grants which helped us to organize this event without any inconvenience.

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Cultivating Success with Other Student Chapters

By OSA Beijing Jiaotong University (BJTU) Student Chapter | Posted: 27 April 2016

Beijing Jiaotong University OSA Student Chapter held a series of events from April 21st to April 22nd, titled "Biomedical Sensing and Optical Fiber Sensing Seminar" as well as the "BJTU OSA/SPIE Student Chapter Symposium", to commemorate The Optical Society’s 100th anniversary. We invited Professor Alex Vitkin (University of Toronto, Fellow of OSA and SPIE, the SPIE Visiting Lecturer), who has expertise in medical physics and applications of lasers in medicine, to attend these celebrations.

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2016 USA Science and Engineering Festival

By Jen Tedeschi | Posted: 26 April 2016

On 15-17 April 2016, The Optical Society (OSA) participated in the 2016 USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington, DC. This festival is a bi-annual event to advance STEM education and inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers. There were 1,000 participating organizations with over 3,000 hands-on activities for attendees to learn more about science. We partnered with our sister societies under the name of Big Top Physics to help attendees learn more about the general field of physics. OSA featured our Centennial Exhibit, the Explore Optics Kit, as well as a Light Paint Booth where attendees received a picture of their creation.

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Visiting the Kansas Optical Society

By Tso Yee Fan, MIT Lincoln Laboratory | Posted: 26 April 2016

The Kansas Optical Society student chapter, based at Kansas State University, is active in running events such as arranging for and hosting OSA Traveling Lecturer and putting together outreach at the University Open House. The chapter has around 20 members and hosted me on a very full day in Manhattan, Kansas. Some of the research activities included ultrafast molecular dynamics, laser development, and ultrafast x-ray science. These activities centered around the J. R. Macdonald Laboratory, which houses multiple short-pulse, Ti-sapphire-based laser systems along with ion sources and accelerators. This is a shared facility for the one of the larger U. S. university AMO physics communities.

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A Lecturer Down Under

By San Francisco State University OSA Student Chapter | Posted: 26 April 2016

On Thursday March 17th 2016, we had the pleasure of hosting Dr. Yuri Kivshar, from the Nonlinear Physics Center at the Australian National University in Canberra, Australia, through the OSA Traveling Lecturer Program. Dr. Kivshar works for the physics and astronomy department at San Francisco State University in San Francisco California. 

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Developments in Optics and Communications 2016

By OSA Student Chapter of University of Latvia | Posted: 26 April 2016

From the 21st to 23rd of March, the 12th International student and young scientist conference “Developments in Optics and Communications 2016” (DOC 2016) was held in Riga, Latvia. Many brilliant young scientists gathered from different countries to share their scientific work, insights and experiences in various fields related to optics: vision science, optical materials, biophotonics, laser physics and spectroscopy.

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The 11th Annual Materials and Optics Poster Competition

By Clemson University OSA Student Chapter | Posted: 26 April 2016

This year the Clemson University OSA Student Chapter held a poster competition for undergraduate and graduate students for Clemson University and surrounding universities. The event was held on campus at the Madren Conference Center and co-sponsored by the Clemson University Student Chapter of Materials Research Society. This year we had 43 posters and 30 judges in attendance. Each poster was judged by three people who consisted of faculty of Clemson and other universities, staff members, members of industry, and national lab members. We also invited alumni of the College of Engineering and Science to come back and see what students are doing on campus. The event was well received and we had a large turnout from our alumni. 


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The computational modeling conversation continues…

By By Yansong Zhu, Johns Hopkins University | Posted: 15 April 2016

The final session from Day 1 of the Incubator was Performance Metrics/Task-based Assessment. Andrew Watson, from NASA Ames Research Center focused on visual performance metrics for imaging systems. He analyzed the problems of traditional models and discussed improvements that could be made using new approaches. His used examples of letters, aircraft, and watercraft to further illustrate his improvements. Next, Meredith Kupinski, from the University of Arizona, discussed model observation for image quality evaluation. She mentioned that image quality is statistical and can never be defined with a single image. The optimal observer for detection and estimation requires a full characterization of image statistics and characterizing image statistics usually requires an unrealistic quantity of sample images. She also gave some examples to show the performance of her model. After she concluded her discussion, the first day of Computational Modeling Incubator came to the end.

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​OSA Incubator on Computational Modeling & Performance Metrics for Imaging System Design & Evaluation – Day 1

By Yansong Zhu, Johns Hopkins University | Posted: 14 April 2016

During the OSA Incubator on Computational Modeling & Performance Metrics for Imaging System Design & Evaluation hosts Joseph Reynolds, from the Night Vision and Electronic Sensors Directorate of the U.S. Army, and Christian Graff, from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, gave the overview of what they wanted to accomplish. The goal of this meeting is to share information among researchers in different fields with common problems, to foster future collaborations, to identify areas in need of further research, and to develop strategies for incorporating computer simulations in imaging device performance evaluation. Their hope was to bring together defense and medical imaging science communities to share methods, lessons learned, issues, and future directions for modeling and simulation of complex imaging systems. After the overview presentations, 

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An Exchange of Diverse Topics and New Ideas

By UCLA OSA Student Chapter | Posted: 13 April 2016

Big Data Photonics Workshop 2016: “Trends Shaping the Future of Photonics” was organized at Carnesale Commons in University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) on 25 March 2016 by Jalali-Lab at UCLA jointly with Technical University of Denmark (DTU). The workshop drew 85 participants from USA, Denmark, and around the globe. The workshop was sponsored by Innovation Center Denmark – Silicon Valley with support from The Optical Society (OSA) and SPIE. Prof. Bahram Jalali, the Northrop Grumman Opto-Electronic Chair in Electrical Engineering at UCLA, co-led the event with DTU Professor of Photonics Engineering Professor Idelfonso Tafur Monroy and Mr. Mikkel Bülow Skovborg from Innovation Center Denmark, Silicon Valley. 

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Symposium on Optics

By OSA KULeuven Student Chapter | Posted: 12 April 2016

On February 8th and 9th 2016, the KU Leuven OSA student chapter organized a broad symposium on optics. With invited speakers from several European countries, we were able to address a large variety in audience. This was clear from the diverse backgrounds of the students that attended the symposium, ranging from biomedical sciences and (bio)chemistry, to optical engineering. However, all speakers gave a very clear and interesting talk, which could be followed by all of our attendants, master and PhD students alike. The chapter was able to provide participants and speakers with several coffee breaks and delicious lunches, for which we are very grateful to OSA for the grants we received. 

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Motivating to Pursue Your Dreams

By International School of Photonics Student Chapter | Posted: 12 April 2016

Professor Kishan Dholakia’s visit was really a great experience for the students of International School of Photonics. His lectures were really informative and impressive speaking on the scale of his presentation skills. There were three illuminating lectures, each of them being interesting in its own ways as the titles: 1. Lights, Camera, Action: Optics in Healthcare, 2. Shaped Beams and Applications for Biomedical Imaging, 3. Let Light Move You: Optical Manipulation.

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Husband and Wife Team

By Technion OSA Student Chapter | Posted: 12 April 2016

On the 25th of January 2016, the Technion OSA chapter hosted Professor Margaret Murnane and Professor Henry Keptyn, ultrafast science pioneers and it was a huge success and all thanks to the Traveling Lecturer Program. 

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An Impactful Experience

By Oxford OSA Student Chapter | Posted: 12 April 2016

It was a great pleasure for the Oxford OSA student chapter to host Professor Sanders. He was a most experienced OSA ambassador, open to engaging with all of our chapter members as well as other students from the Department and very keen to support the activities of our society. We have been a chapter for 3 years and are still trying to find ways to increase our membership base and expand our activities. We have so far focused on local outreach events in museums and the university, and also hosted a number of talks from local speakers. However, this was the first time that we have taken part in the OSA travelling lecturer program. We feel like the event was a great success and has raised the profile of our chapter within the department.

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Discussing Thin Films

By University of Wisconsin Milwaukee Student Chapter | Posted: 12 April 2016

We invited Dr. George Atanasoff who is a recognized professional in the field of Optical Engineering and a member of Optical Society of America for over 20 years. Dr. Atanasoff started his career as university professor in Physics. Later he gradually transitioned his career into the industry, managing large industrial R&D departments and federal programs for variety of applications, such as optical communications, semiconductors, X-ray, solar and LED. The lecture is a part of The Optical Society’s Traveling Lecturer Program. The lecture was directed towards professionals and scholars in Physics, Material Science and Photonics who wish to expand their practical understanding of optics of surfaces and layered structures. It provided us with valuable information about thin films which are critical element of almost every Photonics application and frequently define the operational limits of the contemporary optical devices and systems. This lecture offered a broader and practical understanding of optics of thin films and multi-layer coatings and their characterization. It began with a general overview of some current problems in Photonics associated with the latest advancement of ultrashort laser pulses and entangled photon applications. It also focused on some theoretical and practical aspects of thin films used in Photonics. A special emphasis was made on the evolution of the optical properties during the film growth and the spectroscopic techniques for monitoring and characterization of thin films and surfaces. A variety of coherency phenomena in thin films and coatings was discussed with some practical ideas on how to use them to deduct physical parameters of the layered structure as it is being made. The lecture ended with a review of several aspects of the physical, statistical and phenomenological modeling of processes for deposition of thin films and multi-layer coatings.
This lecture enabled us to spread the word about The Optical Society and to attract new members to join our chapter.

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Recruiting the Future

By OSA UANL Student Chapter | Posted: 8 April 2016

During the first week of the Spring Semester, OSA UANL Student Chapter organized an Invitational Session on the UANL Physics building main Hall. Officers and Student members offered an attractive talk about the experience, benefits and responsibilities of being an OSA member in order to invite graduate and undergraduate students to join the OSA UANL Student Chapter as an OSA Student member. 

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