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.

Briefs : Nanotechnology
New Imaging Method Aids in Water Decontamination
New Imaging Method Aids in Water Decontamination

A breakthrough imaging technique developed by Cornell researchers shows promise in decontaminating water by yielding surprising and important information about catalyst particles that can't be...

New Imaging Method Aids in Water Decontamination
Application Briefs : Software
Machine Vision Applications in Laser Measurement Systems
Machine Vision Applications in Laser Measurement Systems

Machine vision is a broad term with many applications and definitions, but at its most basic definition it is using an imager or camera along with software to inspect and analyze a...

Machine Vision Applications in Laser Measurement Systems
Articles : Robotics, Automation & Control
Machine Vision Camera Trends: 2019 and Beyond
Machine Vision Camera Trends: 2019 and Beyond
Each passing year, machine vision is finding its way into applications that were not commercially feasible — and in some cases, impossible.
Machine Vision Camera Trends: 2019 and Beyond
Facility Focus : Test & Measurement
Facility Focus: Georgia Tech Research Institute
Facility Focus: Georgia Tech Research Institute

The Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) is the nonprofit applied research division of the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) in Atlanta, GA. Founded in 1934 as the Engineering...

Facility Focus: Georgia Tech Research Institute
Application Briefs : Semiconductors & ICs
3D-Printing a Unique Metal Part
3D-Printing a Unique Metal Part
VELO 3D
Campbell, CA
www.velo3d.com

Over the past four years, Enrique Enriquez, president of KW Micro Power, has worked in pursuit of his company’s goal: a microturbine generator roughly...

3D-Printing a Unique Metal Part
NASA Spinoff : Automotive
Methane Detector Sniffs Out Leaks
Methane Detector Sniffs Out Leaks

Methane is everywhere on Earth. It’s the main ingredient in the natural gas that powers heating, cooking, and electricity. It’s also a potent greenhouse gas. The presence of methane is also interesting...

Methane Detector Sniffs Out Leaks
Briefs : Imaging
Robot “Eye” Provides 360° Field of View
Robot “Eye” Provides 360° Field of View

The production of precision products depends on robot control systems knowing the location of the adhesive bonding head or welding head to the nearest millimeter at all times. This means the robot...

Robot “Eye” Provides 360° Field of View
Articles : Transportation
Products of Tomorrow: September 2019
Products of Tomorrow: September 2019

Semi-Liquid Metal Anode for Next-Generation Batteries

Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University have developed a semi-liquid lithium metal-based anode. Lithium batteries made using this new...

Products of Tomorrow: September 2019
Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Organic Carbon-Nitride Semiconductor
Organic Carbon-Nitride Semiconductor

Some organic materials cannot be utilized similarly to silicon semiconductors in optoelectronics. Whether in solar cells, light-emitting diodes, or in transistors, what is important is the bandgap, i.e....

Organic Carbon-Nitride Semiconductor
INSIDER : Test & Measurement
Beyond Camouflage, Do You See Other Applications for Artificial ‘Chameleon Skin?’

A Cambridge University team developed an artificial "chameleon skin" that changes color when exposed to light. The material supports a range of applications, including active camouflage, large-scale dynamic displays, and maybe even medical diagnostics.

Blog : Test & Measurement
When Exposed to Light, Artificial 'Chameleon Skin' Changes Color
When Exposed to Light, Artificial 'Chameleon Skin' Changes Color
"Actually it was not something we really planned!" Dr. Andrew Salmon told Tech Briefs.
When Exposed to Light, Artificial 'Chameleon Skin' Changes Color
White Papers : Defense
HydraLok™ Advanced Desiccant: A New Tool in the War on Moisture and Humidity

Moisture is the silent killer of munitions and sensitive electronics. AGM’s HydraLok™ Advanced Desiccant is a dense, shapeable, desiccant that provides superior moisture adsorption throughout a wide range of temperatures. It’s strong enough to be used as a...

White Papers : Transportation
Thin-Film Interference Filters for LIDAR

LIDAR is becoming more efficient, affordable, and accessible than ever. Recent technological advancements have seen dramatically increased accuracy and resolution, even in systems that are small enough to be discretely hidden within the side mirrors of self-driving cars. Thin-film interference filters...

Blog : Photonics/Optics
Camera Sees Objects Around Corners (Even Better Than Before)
Camera Sees Objects Around Corners (Even Better Than Before)
A new-and-improved system from Stanford University captures light from a greater variety of surfaces, allowing a wider, farther imagery than ever before.
Camera Sees Objects Around Corners (Even Better Than Before)
Briefs : Imaging
Full-Color Holograms Can Be Viewed With Low Light
Full-Color Holograms Can Be Viewed With Low Light

Researchers have created inexpensive, full-color, 2D and 3D holograms that are more realistic and brighter, and can be viewed at wider angles than current holograms.

Full-Color Holograms Can Be Viewed With Low Light
Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Combustion Gas Heat Exchanger
Combustion Gas Heat Exchanger

Two very challenging problems facing the U.S. and the world are energy security and global climate change, largely due to dependence on fossil fuels. Cost-effective technologies have been developed that are...

Combustion Gas Heat Exchanger
Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
System Provides “Electric Eyesight” for Autonomous Vehicles
System Provides “Electric Eyesight” for Autonomous Vehicles

Autonomous vehicles relying on light-based image sensors often struggle to see through blinding conditions such as fog. Sub-terahertz wavelengths, which are between microwave...

System Provides “Electric Eyesight” for Autonomous Vehicles
Briefs : Materials
Method Uses Ultraviolet Light to Control Fluid Flow and Organize Particles
Method Uses Ultraviolet Light to Control Fluid Flow and Organize Particles

A new method uses ultraviolet light to control the flow of fluids by encouraging particles — from plastic microbeads, to bacterial spores, to pollutants — to...

Method Uses Ultraviolet Light to Control Fluid Flow and Organize Particles
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Light-Activated Micro-Pump
Light-Activated Micro-Pump

Even the smallest mechanical pumps have limitations, from the micro-fabrication techniques required to make them to the fact that there are limits on their size. A laser-driven photoacoustic microfluidic pump was...

Light-Activated Micro-Pump
Briefs : Materials
Controlling Thermal Conductivity of Polymers with Light
Controlling Thermal Conductivity of Polymers with Light

Polymers are regularly used as thermal insulators and can even be used as thermal conductors to enable efficient heating or cooling. A new type of polymer was created that demonstrates...

Controlling Thermal Conductivity of Polymers with Light
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Visualizing Motion of Water Molecules for Liquid-Based Electronics

A high-resolution inelastic x-ray scattering technique was used to measure the strong bond involving a hydrogen atom sandwiched between two oxygen atoms. This hydrogen bond is a quantum-mechanical phenomenon responsible for various properties of water, including viscosity, that...

Briefs : Lighting
Double-Sided Si(Ge)/Sapphire/III-Nitride Hybrid Structures
Double-Sided Si(Ge)/Sapphire/III-Nitride Hybrid Structures

NASA Langley Research Center has developed a double-sided Si(Ge)/ Sapphire/III-Nitride hybrid structure. This technology uses both sides of a sapphire wafer to build device...

Double-Sided Si(Ge)/Sapphire/III-Nitride Hybrid Structures
Articles : Photonics/Optics
Image Warping Caused by Heat-Induced Turbulence
Image Warping Caused by Heat-Induced Turbulence

It is well known from astronomical imaging that various atmospheric conditions and weather effects have an impact on image quality. This is due to local changes of the refractive index of the...

Image Warping Caused by Heat-Induced Turbulence
INSIDER : Medical
Tiny Laser is an Important Step Toward New Sensors
Tiny Laser is an Important Step Toward New Sensors

In a major step toward developing portable scanners that can rapidly measure molecules in pharmaceuticals or classify tissue in patients’ skin, researchers have created an imaging system...

Tiny Laser is an Important Step Toward New Sensors
INSIDER : Photonics/Optics
New Products: July 2019 Photonics & Imaging Insider
New Products: July 2019 Photonics & Imaging Insider

Blue Pulsed Laser Diode Module

OSI Laser Diode (LDI) (Edison, NJ) launched a blue 450-nm pulsed laser diode module that includes an electrostatic discharge (ESD) protection...

New Products: July 2019 Photonics & Imaging Insider
INSIDER : Photonics/Optics
Using Light Waves to Enable Ultrafast Quantum Computing
Using Light Waves to Enable Ultrafast Quantum Computing

Jigang Wang patiently explained his latest discovery in quantum control that could lead to superfast computing based on quantum mechanics. He mentioned light-induced superconductivity...

Using Light Waves to Enable Ultrafast Quantum Computing
INSIDER : Photonics/Optics
How to Bend Light Waves in the Right Place
How to Bend Light Waves in the Right Place

In free space, the light wave of a laser beam spreads on an exactly straight line. Under certain circumstances, however, a much more complicated behavior occurs. If the movement of the wave is...

How to Bend Light Waves in the Right Place
Articles : Sensors/Data Acquisition
The Sensors Behind the GEN II Wearable Device
The Sensors Behind the GEN II Wearable Device

The population is aging and more people need healthcare support, which is having a big impact on the overall cost of medical care. As a result, authorities and health insurance companies are...

The Sensors Behind the GEN II Wearable Device
Briefs : Test & Measurement
More Sensitive Measurement of Semiconductor Material Quality
More Sensitive Measurement of Semiconductor Material Quality

Accurately measuring semiconductor properties of materials in small volumes helps engineers determine the range of applications for which these materials may be suitable in the...

More Sensitive Measurement of Semiconductor Material Quality
Briefs : AR/AI
Face-Tracking Robot
Face-Tracking Robot

A robot is being developed that tracks facial movements to perform human tasks. The robot resembles large, squiggly arms holding tiny cameras. Sitting in a rolling office chair across from one of the arms, the robot's...

Face-Tracking Robot