After announcing that the SPIE Photonics West 2021 technical conference and exhibition would be postponed until March 6-11 at San Francisco’s Moscone Center, show organizers were forced to go virtual and take the event completely online due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Now called the Photonics West Digital Forum, the virtual event will offer a mix of live plenary talks, on-demand technical presentations and discussions, online networking and special events, as well as a digital marketplace with product demonstrations and the ability to make business connections. Like the live event, the digital forum will cover a broad range of topics and technologies from biomedical optics and biophotonics to industrial lasers, optoelectronics, microfabrication, MOEMS-MEMS, displays, and more.

Technical Conference

As in years past, this year’s online technical program will consist of three separate conferences – BiOS, LASE and OPTO – all designed to give participants easy access to information in their areas of interest.

BiOS: BiOS, which is billed as the world’s largest biophotonics, biomedical optics, and imaging conference, will address the latest developments in the areas of biomedical optics, diagnostics and therapeutics, biophotonics, new imaging modalities, optical coherence tomography, neurophotonics, optogenetics, tissue optics, and nanophotonics. The BiOS portion of the conference will be divided into six technical tracks:

  • Photonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics

  • Neurophotonics, Neurosurgery, and Optogenetics

  • Clinical Technologies and Systems

  • Tissue Optics, Laser-Tissue Interaction, and Tissue Engineering

  • Biomedical Spectroscopy, Microscopy, and Imaging

  • Nano/Biophotonics

LASE: LASE, also known as “the industrial laser, laser source, and laser application conference,” offers participants the opportunity to learn about the latest laser manufacturing; laser materials processing; micro-nano packaging; fiber, diode, and solid state lasers; laser resonators; ultrafast, semiconductor lasers and LEDs; and 3D fabrication technologies. The four conference tracks being offered by LASE are:

  • Laser Sources

  • Nonlinear Optics and Beam Guiding

  • Micro-/Nano Applications

  • Macro Applications

OPTO: OPTO is the Optoelectronics, Photonics Materials and Devices Conference, devoted to addressing the latest developments in a broad range of optoelectronic technologies. Participants can expect to learn about the latest in silicon photonics, photonic crystals, optoelectronics, semiconductor lasers, and nanophotonics, plus quantum technologies for information, sensing, materials, and dots. OPTO is organized into eight technical tracks:

  • Optoelectronic Materials and Devices

  • Photonic Integration

  • Nanotechnologies in Photonics

  • MOEMS-MEMS in Photonics

  • Advanced Quantum and Optoelectronic Applications

  • Semiconductor Lasers and LEDs

  • Displays and Holography

  • Optical Communications: Devices to Systems

Digital Marketplace

One of the most popular attractions at Photonics West every year is the trade show exhibition, where attendees get to see the latest new products, tools and technologies leading companies in the industry have to offer. Show organizers will do their best to move that experience online as well, via the Digital Marketplace.

It is free to attend the Digital Marketplace, but registration is required for both visitors and company representatives. All 2021 Photonics West registrations will include access to the Digital Marketplace to view company listings, watch videos and demonstrations, chat live with company representatives, and more. Only one registration is needed per person, either the free Digital Marketplace and industry session registration or a paid Digital Forum conference registration (which includes Digital Marketplace access).

Online Courses

SPIE will also be offering online courses that align with Photonics West topics and can be added to your Digital Forum registration for a 10% discount. The courses are priced separately and course registration includes slideshow presentations, quizzes, supplemental resources, and a digital certificate. Registrants can gain immediate access for one year from the date of purchase.

Quantum West at Photonics West

Quantum West is a new industry-focused conference on quantum technology. As part of the Photonics West Digital Forum, you’ll be able to connect online to learn and discuss the role that photonics plays as quantum technology moves from R&D to engineering products for the commercial marketplace — including the building of a commercial infrastructure and supply chain. The event, which is organized in partnership with the Quantum Economic Development Consortium (QED-C), will include invited talks, a panel, and discussion opportunities.

SPIE 2021 Awards

The SPIE Awards Program is not only one of the most prestigious ways the Society recognizes excellence, but also one of the longest running SPIE programs. Since 1959, SPIE has honored the best in optics and photonics for their significant achievements and contributions in advancing the science of light. During this year’s live online event you will hear from the 2021 winners who are working in the fields of biomedical optics, photonics and laser technology.

This year’s awards, presented by 2021 SPIE President David Andrews, Univ. of East Anglia (United Kingdom) will include:

Enrico Gratton, Univ. of California/Irvine (United States): Britton Chance Biomedical Optics Award; Keisuke Goda, The Univ. of Tokyo (Japan): Biophotonics Technology Innovator Award; Muyinatu. A. L. Bell, The Johns Hopkins Univ. School of Medicine (United States): Early Career Achievement Award-Academic; Anne Tropper, Univ. of Southampton (United Kingdom): Maiman Laser Award.

For more information on this year’s Photonics West 2021 Digital Forum, or to register, go here .


Photonics & Imaging Technology Magazine

This article first appeared in the March, 2021 issue of Photonics & Imaging Technology Magazine.

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