Feature Articles

Thin-Film Photovoltaics: Making Every Photon Count

Researchers are turning to organic and hybrid nanoscale structures to create more cost-effective solar cells. Thin-film photovoltaic technologies that incorporate silicon are among the best options for effectively managing light.

by Yvonne Carts-Powell
Fifty Years of Visible LEDs

Originally a byproduct of the race to build a semiconductor laser, the visible light-emitting diode emerged in the fall of 1962. Following the “alloy road,” scientists have devised ever-brighter LEDs—and poised them to displace a century-old lighting technology.

by Patricia Daukantas
Bird Brains: Using Picosecond Optical Tomography to Assess Neural Activity

Imaging the brains of birds with picosecond optical tomography gives scientists a fascinating look into how these animals respond to calls and songs—and insight into how the technology could be applied to humans.

by Stéphane Mottin and Bruno Montcel

Departments and Columns

Scatterings
Mapping Matter

Using infrared and X-ray lasers to reveal light’s effect on matter.

Scatterings
Dark Energy Telescope Goes Deep

For the next five years, the 570-megapixel Dark Energy Camera, will be used to scan the depths of space for signs of dark energy.

Scatterings
Identifying Cancer by its Blood Supply

Using optical coherence tomography to image blood vessels.

Scatterings
Tracking Zombie Bees with Lasers

An ingenious system tracks individual bees with lasers and tiny radio-frequency identification (RFID) chips.

Scatterings
Scared of the Needle? A Laser Could Help

A laser-powered drug-delivery device targets the skin layer above the nerve endings, so it should not cause the recipient any pain.

Scatterings
Galaxies Far, Far Away

Astronomers have created a new portrait that reflects humankind’s deepest-ever view of the universe.

Scatterings
U.S. Science Funding in Jeopardy

The U.S. Office of Management and Budget released a report detailing the potential science funding reductions slated to go into effect 2 January 2013, barring an agreement in Congress on deficit reduction.

Scatterings
Honoring Bright Ideas that Once Seemed Dim

A new award program shows that not all government-financed research is odd or pointless; in some cases, it transforms how we live.

Optics Innovations
Optics and Photonics at the Southwest Research Institute

A Texas nonprofit launches a multidisciplinary Center for Applied Optics and Photonics.

Optical Engineering
Stereoscopic Laser Projection Displays

Three-dimensional cinematic display techniques generally don’t translate well for laser projections. Wavelength multiplexing may optimize depth effects without the space limitations of those methods.

Global Optics
CIOMP: The Cradle of China’s Optics

The Changchun Institute of Optics, Fine Mechanics and Physics celebrates 60 years of achievement.


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