The 100-Year View of Photonics, Part 2—The Century of Big Markets
Last month's newsletter looked back on the optics and photonics market and its impact on society. The market has scaled up from a small industry over a century ago to production worth over $400 billion per year. It's growing more slowly today, but the next century will be notable for the large absolute size of the photonics industry.
What remains? We need only to look to a few major forces in society to see where the next big opportunities are. The United Nations estimates the world population at 7.3 billion today, and its forecast plateaus near 11 billion by 2100 in the shape of a sigmoid or "S" curve, shown in the figure. Like the world population, the photonics market is also passing its steepest growth, given that it is the sum of many smaller markets, several of which are already near saturation.
Picture yourself in that world generations from now, looking back at today. What would be different in that world?
There will be many other impressive achievements. In particular, we are in a new golden age of astronomy, thanks to improvements in optics and image processing, and now with the tool of gravitational wave detection. These deep-science discoveries help us to understand our place in the universe.
- Limited natural resources. Increasing population will put pressure on natural resources, and climate change will disrupt that further. Over 1 billion people lack access to clean water today, and the United Nations estimates that nearly one-half of the world will live in a region of high water stress as soon as 2030. UV water treatment is already widely used in municipal plants. Photovoltaic energy generation is now mainstream, and gaining share. Commercializing laser-driven inertial confinement fusion energy would be hugely transformative, if it can be made to happen. Other opportunities are in monitoring water, energy, scarce minerals, and the food supply.
- Life sciences. Electronics emerged as one of the most important technologies of the 20th century, and many in our community hope that photonics will take over that role in the 21st century. But biotechnology will arguably be the transformative technology of this century. From diagnostics to therapy, from personalized health to public health and food safety, from lowering health care costs in wealthy economies to enabling more and better care in poor economies, life sciences will play important roles. In photonics this spans vision implants, molecular imaging, proteomics, breathalyzers, saliva detectors, light therapies, pill cameras, wearables, telemedicine, cytometry, neuroscience, photoacoustics, and more.
- Security. As a society, we tolerate and even demand increasing levels of security, as the world continues to become ever more interconnected. Cognitive scientist Steven Pinker argues that human violence is in a long-term decline, in part because of—or leading to—new definitions of what is unacceptable risk. Consequently, security ranges from physical security to protecting access, integrity, and uptime reliability of data. It spans personal security to national security and monitoring compliance to international agreements. In photonics this includes multi-spectral imaging, hazardous material detection, biometrics, surveillance, premises monitoring with fiber sensors, quantum encryption, countermeasures, directed energy, and so on.
- Intelligent automation. The integration of automation into many everyday technologies that we take for granted is not an end-use technology in itself, but is significant enough to merit a separate category. Think of self-driving cars, drone aircraft, touch-free gesture recognition, virtual and augmented reality, robotic surgery, humanoid robot caregivers, atomic clocks, and sensors for the Internet of Everything.
What are not on the list are science fantasies. Drilling for offshore oil in the arctic remains prohibitively expensive and dangerous, making space colonization a non-starter. Virtual reality phone calls? Maybe. 3D holographic projections? No. Products will still have to meet the constraints of the market, not to mention physics.
The list of the next big opportunities is short because we have been so successful to commercialize what we have invented already. Technologies that transform productivity and society are rare. Far more common are those that improve on what's already there.
But the market of the next 100 years will be larger in absolute scale than ever before, as we address serious issues of limited resources, health, security, and automation. And that's just as exciting.
World population history (through 2015) and medium variant projection (to 2100), in billions of individuals. Source: World Population Prospects: The 2015 Revision (United Nations, 2015).
The Semiconductor Roadmap is Dead—Long Live the New Roadmaps!
We wrote in the June newsletter about the demise of the famous semiconductor roadmap, the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS). Its last revision was in 2013, 21 years after its first report. This month we want to highlight some important and overlapping efforts that are filling its place.
- Many years ago, iNEMI took on the roadmapping for the backend packaging and board-level electronics, including optoelectronics. iNEMI was formed in 1995 and went international in 2003.
- The MIT Microphotonics Center has sponsored a roadmapping effort in integrated photonics for several years called the Communications Technology Roadmap (CTR), under the supervision of Prof. Lionel (Kim) Kimerling. This effort was enhanced through a grant from the U.S. agency NIST issued in 2014, through a collaboration of MIT and iNEMI within an operation called the Photonics Systems Manufacturing Consortium (PSMC). The grant was awarded to create roadmaps for topics ripe for consortia. After the grant was awarded, the U.S. government held a competition for the integrated photonics institute that was eventually awarded to AIM Photonics, of which MIT and iNEMI were signatories. The project funded under the NIST grant is coming to a close, but MIT and iNEMI are transitioning the roadmapping effort to support the AIM Photonics institute.
- The legacy of the ITRS lived on as ITRS 2.0, focusing on seven topics rather than the sheer technology advancement of Moore's Law. In 2015, a group was formed to continue the continue the original ITRS roadmap with regard to heterogeneous integration of electronics. It is a joint effort by the IEEE Components, Packaging, and Manufacturing Technology (CPMT) Society, IEEE Electron Devices Society, and SEMI, the semiconductor equipment manufacturers trade association. The IEEE effort spans all types of heterogeneous integration within electronic packages, not just with photonics. The most recent report dedicated just 3 pages of general discussion explicitly to optoelectronics (out of 92), and that section acknowledges the contribution of iNEMI and the MIT Microphotonics Center.
These different efforts are complementary, not competing. The MIT-AIM effort approaches manufacturing from the viewpoint of the photonics community, while the ITRS offspring is more about electronics manufacturing. The efforts share many key figures, particularly through iNEMI. There are also other roadmapping efforts, in Europe and Japan, and in the standards bodies.
Where is OIDA's role? OIDA has looked for gaps in these other efforts, both in technical roadmapping (e.g., optical interconnects for extreme-scale computing, photonics for disaggregated data centers) and in market challenges (see for example, the January 2016 issue of the OIDA Market Update). For questions, contact Tom Hausken.
Spotlight on OSA's Laser Congress, New Laser Applications Conference and OIDA Executive Forum
We would like to highlight a new and improved event coming at the end of October that many of you may not be familiar with: the OSA Laser Congress and the OIDA Executive Forum in Boston. The Laser Congress combines three conferences:
The half-day Executive Forum follows the style of the OSA Executive Forum collocated annually at OFC, the Optical Fiber Communication Conference. It focuses on the business side of lasers, rather than more nitty-gritty technical achievements and applications featured in the rest of the congress. Among the notable presenters, we are proud to include David Townes, co-founder of Needham & Co. (and nephew of Charles Townes), who will talk about the investment side of the laser business. It will also include Kevin Wolf, U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce, who has led the administration's rewrite of the U.S. ITAR regulations. The new regulations are due to be released very soon.
There are many more prominent speakers at OSA's Laser Congress and the Executive Forum including Valentin P. Gapontsev, Founder, Chief Executive Officer, and Chairman of IPG's Board of Directors and Berthold Schmidt, Managing Director, TRUMPF Photonics, Inc., USA. And with over 70 exhibits you will meet representatives from the companies and institutions around the globe that are leading the field in laser applications. We hope to you see you there from 30 October to 3 November in Boston.
Register Now! >> and Book Your Hotel!
Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Administration,
U.S. Department of Commerce, USA
Needham & Co., USA
Valentin P. Gapontsev
Founder, Chief Executive Officer, and Chairman of IPG's Board of Directors, IPG, USA
Managing Director, TRUMPF Photonics, Inc.,
US, Keynote Speaker
Welcome New Industry Member
Congratulations to the Advanced LIGO Engineering Team — 2016 Paul F. Forman Team Engineering Excellence Award Winner
The Advanced LIGO Engineering Team will receive the award during the plenary session at OSA's Annual Meeting, Frontiers in Optics (FiO), which takes place 19 October in Rochester, New York, USA. Dennis Coyne and GariLynn Billingsley, California Institute of Technology, and Stuart Aston and Richard McCarthy, LIGO Livingston Observatory, will be accepting the award on behalf of the team. The engineering team was comprised of individuals from a number of research organizations including LIGO Laboratory—Caltech, LIGO Laboratory—MIT, LIGO Laboratory—LIGO Hanford Observatory, LIGO Laboratory—LIGO Livingston Observatory, Albert Einstein Institute and Laser Zentrum Hannover, Glasgow University, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Stanford University, University of Florida. They are being recognized for innovative engineering creating the most sensitive measurement instrument ever built, leading to the first direct detection of gravitational waves. View the full team list and learn more about the 2016 Paul F. Forman Team Engineering Excellence Award Winners .
Call for Nominations — 2017 Advocate of Optics Recognition
Do you know a public official who has been a champion of optics? Tell us about him or her. Each year, OSA's Advocate of Optics Recognition commends an outstanding public official who demonstrates leadership in support of the advancement of the science of light. The Public Policy Committee is soliciting nominations from OSA members and will select a candidate based on his/her commitment to science and science policy, level of familiarity with optics and photonics, level of interaction with OSA or OSA members in the past year, and record of consistent support of science, optics and photonics. To see a list of past recipients, visit the Advocate of Optics webpage.
If you would like to submit a nomination, please email your recommendation to email@example.com including the nominee's name, title, country, and description of why the person is being nominated. The deadline for submitting recommendations for the 2017 Advocate of Optics is 24 October 2016.
Unique Career Opportunity: OSA Congressional Science Policy Fellowship
Combine your interest in policy with your science background. Congressional Science Policy Fellows spend one year on Capitol Hill working as legislative assistants on the staff of a member of Congress or Congressional Committee. Applicants must have a Ph.D. by the start of the fellowship, 1 September 2017, to be eligible; mid - and late-career applicants are also encouraged to apply. In addition to being a great opportunity for young professionals, it is also an ideal way to spend an academic sabbatical or leave of absence from a company. Deadline to apply is 6 January 2017. To learn more about eligibility and application requirements, visit www.osa.org/congressionalfellowships.
"Lights. Camera. Optics!" Video Your Optics Vision of 2030 and Win $500 or a Go-Pro Camera
Using the theme "Light the Future," create a video of no more than 90 seconds in length demonstrating a problem optics could solve by 2030, ideally using research you have conducted or a product in development/new application. Videos must be posted onto the user's YouTube page, and the link submitted to LightTheFuture@osa.org between 15 September and 28 October 2016. Finalist videos will be posted on the OSA YouTube page for viewing and liking between 1 November and 15 November. Videos will be evaluated on both likes/shares and the ability to share a compelling vision of the future for optics technologies. Science celebrity Ira Flatow will judge finalists. For details, visit osa.org/100/get_involved.
OSA Light the Future Speaker Series
Michio Kaku and Nobel Laureates
Thursday, 20 October, 11:00—12:30
Frontiers in Optics Conference & Exhibition, Rochester, NY, USA
This OSA Centennial program features Michio Kaku, futurist and theoretical physicist, City College of New York, with Sir Peter L. Knight, emeritus professor, Imperial College, London, OSA Fellow, 2004 President. Join The Optical Society as we celebrate our 100th anniversary and hear Ignite the Future predictions of what's next in optics by Nobel Prize winners, including Nicolaas Bloembergen, Robert F. Curl, Roy J. Glauber, John L. Hall, W.E. Moerner, William D. Phillips and David J. Wineland.
Kaku will deliver the keynote — Optics of the Future: Exploring the Universe and the Brain. This talk explores the physics behind exciting new fields, such as detecting gravity waves from black holes, detecting twins of the earth in space, energizing laser-powered star ships, and unraveling the Big Bang. It will also explore inner space, e.g. the use of optogenetics to map the neural pathways of the human brain in the Connectome Project, one of the great science projects of the future. This event is free and open to the general public. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your spot.
OIDA Funding Accelerator Speed Meetings: SBIR/STTR
The OIDA Funding Accelerator Speed Meetings: SBIR/STTR focusing on optics and photonics funding, will be held in Washington, DC on 17 November 2016. This event will give U.S. companies with less than 500 employees an opportunity to meet one-on-one with program officers from multiple U.S. federal agencies, all in one place, in one day — minimizing your time investment and increasing your chances for new government funding.
This OSA event will give you an insider perspective on what agencies are looking to fund; as well as provide you with up-to-date information on each agency's SBIR/STTR funding process, and how you can enhance your probability of success. In addition, the event will help government agencies better understand what OSA Industry Development Associates Members can offer and how the optics and photonics technologies can help them meet their goals. For more information and to secure your company's reservation, please e-mail OSA Director of Corporate Membership, Andrew Dougherty at email@example.com to RSVP.
Browse these New Engineering & Lab Notes published in Applied Optics
Engineering and Laboratory Notes (E&L Notes), highlight laboratory techniques and hands-on skills that technicians and specialists can use for the design, analysis, fabrication, integration, alignment, and measurement of optical components and systems.
Recently published E&L Notes include:
Applied Optics welcomes your E&L Notes submissions. Highlight your company's innovative techniques and submit your manuscript today. If you aren't yet ready to submit and want to learn more, read this editorial by the E&L Notes Editor Brian Monacelli.
- Optical tweezer calibration by using a part of the intensity distribution of a trapped particle by Harun Yücel and Nazmi Turan Okumuşoğlu
- Recognition of wall materials through active thermography coupled with numerical simulations by Francesca Pietrarca, Mauro Mameli, Sauro Filippeschi, and Fabio Fantozzi
- Collimated focal ratio degradation testing for highly multiplexed fiber systems—an improvement to a standard test by Daniel Finstad, Edward Wishnow, Claire Poppett, Martin Sirk, Jerry Edelstein, Steve Gibson, Geoff Marcy, and Andrew Howard
- Large-aperture two-dimensional x-ray refractive mosaic lenses by Vladimir Nazmov, Elena Reznikova, Juergen Mohr, Volker Saile, Hiroo Tajiri, and Anja Voigt
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|OSA Industry Development Associates Committee
Thank you to the volunteers who oversee the programs and services available to the Industry Community.
| • Alex Fong,
Gooch & Housego, Chair
• Jean-Michel Pelaprat,
Figulus, Past Chair
• Henrik Skov
• Simin Cai,
|• John Dexheimer,
• James Fisher,
• Fred Leonberger,
• Claudio Mazzali,
| • Mike Mielke,
• Martin Seifert,
• Costel Subran,
• Christoph Harder,
Harder and Partner,