January 2004

Lenses in Cinematography

Iain A. Neil

Modern cinematographic lenses can house up to 25 elements and are heavily dependent on computers. The author describes a number of these lenses using movie examples to show their purpose, versatility and limitations.

The Drive for Energy Efficient Lighting

At least 25 percent of the total electric power delivered to homes, businesses and factories throughout the world is used for lighting. Growth in demand is expected to outpace the adoption of more energy efficient lighting systems unless a major scientific breakthrough can be achieved.

Astronomy at the South Pole

Polar astronomers working with submillimeter telescopes are measuring the cosmic microwave background radiation left over from the Big Bang, mapping our galaxy in the spectral line of atomic carbon and measuring polarized submillimeter radiation to map magnetic fields in our galaxy.

High Speed Microscopy in Biomedical Research

High speed fluorescence microscopy provides a way to observe chemical instabilities and biochemical reactions in living cells and tissues. Besides providing insight into the mechanisms that govern biological processes, it may lead to the identification of new drugs and diagnostic tools.

Spatial Heterodyne Spectroscopy For High Spectral Resolution Space-Based Remote Sensing

Spatial heterodyne spectroscopy (SHS) offers a number of advantages compared to conventional Fourier transform spectroscopy. An extremely robust, monolithic SHS interferometer will fly aboard a small satellite scheduled for launch in 2006.

Noninvasive Imaging of the Brain

Near-infrared spectroscopy offers a noninvasive, portable means to image brain function. Researchers have begun to explore its potential for the diagnosis and treatment of depression, schizophrenia and other disorders.


A Physicist on Captiol Hill

A Year on Capitol Hill


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