The International Day of Light, observed annually on 16 May, is a unique opportunity to celebrate the incredible ways that light science impacts people’s lives. To commemorate this important day, OPN has put together several stories from this year that showcase how light science is driving advances across applications in sustainable development, clean energy, health care, communications infrastructure, astronomy, cultural preservation and more.
OPN talked with Optica Honorary Member and Nobel laureate John Mather about the Webb Space Telescope’s deployment—and what an extended mission timeline might enable.
[01 March 2022]
OPN talks with three scientists involved in an Optica-led effort that puts optical sensors to work in the battle against both local pollution and global climate change.
[01 April 2022]
Noninvasive technique reveals the New Testament “Lord’s Prayer” on a corroded lead funerary cross from 16th century France.
[05 May 2022]
Using fluorescent silk from genetically modified silkworms, researchers create smartphone-readable tags for use in authenticating medications at the point of sale or use.
[13 April 2022]
A nonsurgical implant that uses a laser to kill stomach cells that make the “hunger hormone” could help obese patients lose weight.
[07 April 2022]
Addition of a low-cost thermo-electric generator could allow photovoltaic systems to provide electricity at night, without battery storage, by harvesting Earth’s radiant heat after sunset.
[05 April 2022]
Researchers combine a light-emitting polymer with polyurethane to create a stretchable, flexible all-polymer LED with high brightness.
[31 March 2022]
A lightweight two-photon microscope for large-scale calcium imaging simultaneously records the activity of thousands of neurons in freely moving mice, allowing for more detailed brain mapping.
[24 March 2022]
Researchers build a prototype vector light-field display that can reconstruct a 3D virtual image at extended viewing distances.
[17 March 2022]
Algorithm combines spectral and structural information in a few seconds, potentially aiding breast cancer screening.
[02 March 2022]
The UN International Year of Glass, celebrated throughout 2022, offers an opportunity to reflect on the enabling role of glass in fiber optics—and on their entangled futures.
[01 March 2022]
Data from the TROPOMI imaging spectrometer on the Sentinel-5P satellite have enabled an inventory of the world’s biggest methane emitters—a potentially useful tool in the climate fight.
[07 February 2022]
Prototype device that employs surface-enhanced Raman scattering reportedly obtains results with greater than 95% accuracy—in less than five minutes.
[05 February 2022]
Researchers achieved plasma burning by focusing powerful lasers on a tiny cavity.
[02 February 2022]
A method for creating a microlens from a lipid droplet inside a live cell allows imaging and tracking of intra- and extracellular structures in real time.
[06 January 2022]