Optics in Africa: Six Stories

Stewart Wills

A recently published JOSA A and B feature issue highlighted the wide-ranging optical and photonic research being pursued by scientists on the African continent. For this first installment of a two-part feature, OPN talked with several of the contributors.

figureThe team of master’s, Ph.D. and postdoctoral researchers at the Centre for Broadband Communications, Nelson Mandela University, South Africa. [Courtesy of T. Gibbon]

In October 2020, the OSA journals JOSA A and JOSA B published a virtual joint feature issue, Optics in Africa (www.osapublishing.org/josaa/virtual_issue.cfm?vid=476). According to the issue’s editors—OSA Fellow Andrew Forbes and OSA member Angela Dudley (South Africa), OSA Ambassador Rim Cherif (Tunisia), and Alain M. Dikande (Cameroon)—the project sought to highlight, in a collection of 59 original research papers, review articles and tutorials, the “scope of research on the continent and its international context.” The issue also shone the spotlight on a new generation of researchers in Africa, and the opportunities and challenges they face in moving African optics and photonics research forward.

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