OPN January 2009

Cover Story

Photorealistic Rendering: Making the Virtual into Reality

Patricia Daukantas

Studies of the optical properties of translucent materials help computer graphics wizards dream up ever more realistic scenes of fantastic movie characters and industrial design prototypes. more>>


Silicon Photonic Crystals

Cefe Lopez

Silicon photonic crystals present a tremendous opportunity for integrating optics with electronics, but the challenges are daunting. This article highlights recent approaches toward fabricating silicon photonic crystals that could lead to applications in integrated optical devices, sensing and other areas. more>>

Mechanically Tunable Photonic Crystals

Won Park and J.-B. Lee

The next frontier in photonic crystal research may be to achieve dynamic tunability that allows real-time, on-demand control of the photonic band structure. Recently, researchers have been working on a new strategy for achieving this goal—by applying mechanical force. more>>

Recent Progress in Arrayed Electrowetting Optics

J. Heikenfeld, N. Smith, M. Dhindsa, K. Zhou, M. Kilaru, L. Hou, J. Zhang, E. Kreit and B. Raj

Electrowetting devices can now be formed in arrays covering thousands of square centimeters of glass. New research is pointing the way toward exciting applications for laser radar, 3D displays, adaptive camouflage, electronic paper, retroreflector communication and lab-on-a-chip. more>>


As Planets Pop Into View, Scientists Seek More

Patricia Daukantas

Imaging technology has teased planets out of the enormous glare of their central stars, and astronomers are dreaming up sensitive detectors to find these elusive worlds. more>>

OSA Minorities and Women Share their Stories

Patricia Daukantas

A trio of OSA past presidents discussed their career experiences at the Frontiers in Optics conference. more>>

Did You Know?

Patricia Daukantas

Plasmonics in Rennaissance glassblowing more>>


Optical Engineering

Managing Trade-Offs to Optimize Spectrometry

Jason Eichenholz

You can achieve the best possible performance from your spectrometer by choosing the right optical bench, slit width and detector type for your application. more>>

Optics Innovations

Breault Research Organization: Innovation through Adaptation

Mary Turner

How one company expanded its engineering consultancy to become a full-service optical software provider and engineering firm. more>>

Optics Puzzler

Six Degrees of Optics

Can you connect these celebrities with optical pioneers in six steps? more>>

The History of OSA

Three OSA Historians

John N. Howard

Over the years, several OSA members became history buffs who tracked the progress of the Society. more>>