Photonics & Imaging

Photonics/​Optics

Explore the latest technical briefs and product breakthroughs in photonics and optics. Resources include breakthroughs in lasers, laser systems, fiber optics, optical components, and photonics.

Application Briefs: Imaging
Hyperspectral Cameras and Data Quality
Any hyperspectral system needs to maintain a stable and accurate radiometric and spectral calibration.
Application Briefs: Imaging
Add LiDAR to ADAS for Pedestrian Safety
While ADAS has improved freeway and high-speed driving, the basic need for collision mitigation with pedestrians and bicyclists has mostly remained unaddressed.
Imagine being able to snap a picture of extremely fast events on the order of a picosecond.
Articles: Test & Measurement
Creating High-Precision Glass for NIR Lasers
See what kinds of applications require high-precision laser glass with demanding dimensional tolerances and high-power laser coatings.
Briefs: Test & Measurement
Optimal Information About the Invisible
Researcher are finding ways to estimate a target location when light gets deflected by a disordered structure.
The invention can become color-changing “artificial muscle.”
The next generation of waterproof smart fabrics can be laser-printed and made in minutes.
Perseverance is the first leg of a round trip to Mars.
Special Reports: Photonics/Optics
Rugged Computing - March 2021

From the battlefield to the oceans to the extremes of space, electronics and computing advances enable missions in the harshest conditions. To help you keep pace with the latest developments, we present this...

When SpaceX’s Crew Dragon capsule splashed down off the Florida coast in August following its first crewed mission, the two astronauts inside could not exit the capsule...

The pursuit of fusion as a safe, carbon-free, always-on energy source has intensified in recent years, with a number of organizations pursuing aggressive...

IR and UV Optics

Edmund Optics (EO) (Barrington, NJ) has released Zinc Selenide (ZnSe) Wedged Windows, which are ideal for infrared (IR) applications, and TECHSPEC® Calcium...

The European Space Agency’s (ESA) and NASA’s Solar Orbiter Heliospheric Imager (SoloHI) recently recorded an image showing three of the four inner rocky planets. The...

Question of the Week: Photonics/Optics
Would You Use the 'LaserFactory?'

A technology from MIT known as the "LaserFactory" integrates 3D printers and laser cutters to fabricate wearables, robots, and electronics components like sensors and actuators.

Should you replace your big coordinate measurement machine with laser radar? Or should you just add a laser scanner with a CMM? A reader asks our expert.

Light-emitting diodes — LEDs — are important in many more applications than just illumination. These light sources are useful in microelectronics too. Smartphones, for example,...

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
Compact Infrared Spectrometer
This device fits on a computer chip but can analyze infrared light in the same way as a conventional spectrometer.
The improved rectennas could operate low-power devices such as temperature sensors.
Ultra-thin and flexible metalenses could replace traditional camera lenses.
Briefs: RF & Microwave Electronics
Kodiak 3D LiDAR
This system provides low-cost, reliable 3D LiDAR images in nearly any lighting condition.
This system treats light-responsive disorders or deficits such as eating disorders, sleep problems, hormone-sensitive cancers, and cardiovascular disorders.
This concept could help break through the present-day data-return bottleneck in deep space missions.
Compared to a LED, the omnidirectional laser light is much brighter and better defined.
The material could enable cheaper and more environmentally friendly displays and large-area lighting.
Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Smart Fabric Detects and Collects Space Dust
A smart fiber being tested on the International Space Station could be used to develop space dust telescopes and allow astronauts to feel through their pressurized suits.
Briefs: Test & Measurement
Sensing Magnetic Fields
Applications include detection of explosives, navigation, and aerospace altitude sensing.
A stretchable system can harvest energy from human breathing and motion.
Articles: Packaging & Sterilization
Products of Tomorrow: February 2021
Next-generation solar panels, 3D-printed composites from NASA, and a new way to sterilize medical devices.
Applications include terahertz medical imaging and communications.

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