Feature Articles

Seeing in the Dark: Defense Applications of IR imaging

Infrared imaging is used in many defense applications to enable high-resolution vision and identification in near and total darkness. Thanks to recent advances, optics companies and government labs are improving low-light-level vision, identification capability, power conservation and cost.

by Valerie C. Coffey
Towards an Integrated Chip-Scale Plasmonic Biosensor

Biosensing allows researchers to detect tiny amounts of harmful chemicals before they become major threats. These researchers are using advanced optical technologies to develop the biosensor of the future—a plasmonic-based chip-scale device that will allow for compact, inexpensive, ubiquitous and sensitive detection.

by Ryan M. Gelfand, Dibyendu Dey, John Kohoutek, Alireza Bonakdar, Soojung Claire Hur, Dino Di Carlo and Hooman Mohseni
Insect Eyes Inspire Improved Solar Cells

Taking a cue from nature, these researchers looked to the compound eyes of insects as a model for developing their unique approach to harvesting sunlight.

by Francesco Chiadini, Vincenzo Fiumara, Antonio Scaglione, Drew P. Pulsifer,

Departments and Columns

Light Touch
An Eye toward Multispectral Imaging

The mantis shrimp is a marvel of nature that represents a truly multispectral scanning system.

Optics Innovations
Optonetic: A Niche in Custom Coatings

A small company in Orlando’s optics hub takes advantage of local support and cutting-edge technology to provide customized thin-film coatings for a large range of customers.

Policy Matters
Science in the United Kingdom: Sailing in Stormy Seas

Britain’s scientists and technologists met the government’s spending review with cautious relief— and questions.

Career Focus
Resumes and CVs: A Problem-Solving Approach for Scientists

Scientists are natural problem-solvers, so they’re in luck when it comes to preparing a resume or CV. Getting at the heart of how you can address problems for potential employers is the key to getting your foot in the door for an interview.

Conversations in Optics
OPN Talks with Donald Keck

Our conversation with Donald Keck, CLEO:2011 plenary session keynote speaker.

Tiny Room-Temperature Plasmon Lasers

Researchers demonstrated a nanoscale plasmon laser that works at room temperature, in air.

The History of OSA
Presidents of the Mid-1960s

During the mid-1960s, OSA was led by an expert on colorimetry (and a stickler for grammar) and a pioneer who first envisioned OSA as an international society.

Conversations in Optics
OPN Talks with James Fujimoto

Our conversation with James Fujimoto, OCT pioneer and CLEO:2011 plenary speaker.

A Glass That's Tougher Than Steel

Researchers at two California laboratories have developed a metallic glass that has more resistance to bending and breaking than many types of steel.

Electron Microscopes Get Twisty

Researchers at a U.S. laboratory have created spiraling “electron vortex beams” that could lead to better electron-microscopy images of magnetic and biological materials.

Electromagnetic Liquid Pistons Could Aid in Adaptive Imaging

With simple fluid dynamics, researchers have created an electromagnetically driven liquid-piston system that could be used for small-scale adaptive optics applications.


Also in this Issue

Book Reviews
Book Reviews

In Memory
In Memory

Remembering Hiroshi Takuma and John Lott Brown.


OSA Today
OSA Today

President's Message
President’s Message

OSA Foundation
The OSA Foundation