Feature Articles

Choosing an Ethical Career in Optics

Many of today’s young professionals are looking to pursue careers that deeply resonate with their own values. Although there are few “right” answers when it comes to choosing your career path, you can start by asking the right questions.

by Patricia Daukantas
Concentrated Photovoltaics

One of the challenges of adopting solar power as a widespread energy solution is the sheer amount of space that would be required to harness large amounts of the sun’s energy. Now, photovoltaic technology offers a means of gathering more sunlight into a smaller space.

by Blair Unger
LED Sun Photometry

Twenty years ago, amateur scientist Forrest Mims revolutionized the field of sun photo-metry by devising an inexpensive filterless method of detecting sunlight that uses LEDs as spectrally selective photodiodes. He has been working ever since to develop improved instruments and collect measurements of atmospheric aerosols and water vapor.

by Forrest M. Mims III
Optical Fiber Sensors Based on Brillouin Scattering

Optical physicists are carrying on the legacy of Leon Brillouin by developing and studying Brillouin-based optical fibers that can be used in telecommunications, nonlinear optics and the monitoring of civil structures such as bridges and dams.

by Xiaoyi Bao

Departments and Columns

Optical Engineering
Liquid Mirrors in Engineering

Liquid deformable mirrors are a young but promising technology. They offer engineers a lower-cost alternative to their solid counterparts as well as the ability to generate extremely large deformations.

Optics Innovations
Genvac Aerospace: The Art of Reinvention

How one company transformed itself from a telecom bust into an aerospace boom.

Policy Matters
Global Investments in Scientific R&D

For scientists around the world, one bright spot in the global economic meltdown is an increase in governments’ investment in research and development.

Cloud Imaging Benefits Earth-Space Communications

Researchers at Montana State University (Bozeman, Mont., U.S.A.) have discovered that a cloud-imaging system developed for climate research also shows promise for enhancing Earth-to-space optical communications.

Conversations in Optics
OPN Talks with Andrea Ghez

OPN talks with Andrea Ghez, black hole hunter and FiO keynote speaker.

The History of OSA
OSA’s Charter Members

A look at the lives of some of OSA’s founding fathers.

Ultraviolet LEDs Enhance Lettuce Nutrients

Sientists have found that applying supplemental ultraviolet-B radiation to red-leaf lettuce increases the production of polyphenolic compounds and possibly the storage lifetime of the chemicals.

Did You Know?

A new type of optical disc can store 1.6 terabytes of data.


Also in this Issue

Book Reviews
Book Reviews

After Image
In Memory

Remembering Edward D. Palik, Steven K. Case and Robert E. Hopkins.


OSA Today
OSA Today

President's Message
President’s Message