OPN February 2011

Cover Story

3-D TV and Movies: Exploring the Hangover Effect

Jeff Hecht

New optical technology takes 3-D light-years beyond the cheesy effects of 1950s horror movies. Audiences flocked to Avatar—which set records for gross sales—and dozens of new 3-D films are in the works. In addition, 3-D televisions are... more>>


Computational Nano-optics: Parallel Simulations and Beyond

Maxim Sukharev

Modern theoretical optics often delves into the interaction between light and nanomaterials of complex geometries, and it relies on heavy numerical simulations. This article explores recent breakthroughs in the areas of plasmonics and nanopolaritonics and then describes how to assemble your own supercomputer in order to gather data on nanoscale optics. more>>

Meet the 2011 OSA Fellows

Belinda Acre

The OSA Fellow designation is awarded to select OSA members who have made significant contributions to the advancement of optics. OSA is pleased to welcome 64 new Fellows into its membership.  more>>


Frequency Comb Pushes Limit of Fiber-Optic Strain Sensing

Patricia Daukantas

By integrating an optical frequency comb into a fiber-optic strain-sensing system, a team of Italian researchers has made a sensor that is three orders of magnitude more sensitive than existing instruments. more>>

New Technology Produces Real-Time 3-D Holograms

Yvonne Carts-Powell

Researchers at the University of Arizona have combined a photorefractive polymer that can be refreshed every 2 seconds with a system of cameras, computers and an Ethernet link to provide a holographic version of Skype. more>>

Lasers Sort Carbon Nanotubes

Yvonne Carts-Powell

Researchers at Purdue University report that transient-absorption spectroscopy can be used to quickly sort nanotubes based on how they conduct charge. more>>

Lighting Up the Inside of a Single Molecule

Yvonne Carts-Powell

Researchers used luminescence spectroscopy and microscopy combined with STM imaging and tunneling spectroscopy to distinguish between vibronic couplings in orbitals in the same molecule. more>>


Global Optics

Optics Crosses the Andes

Yuri Kivshar

Although Chile is relatively small in population and geographic size, the country is quickly modernizing. It is making many important contributions to science, both locally and globally, and the field of optics is gaining momentum. more>>

Optical Engineering

Lasers in Consumer Electronics: The Optical Pickup

Sam Goldwasser

The optical pickup is what recovers digital data from the encoded pits in optical storage devices such as CDs, DVDs and Blu-Rays. This article traces the past, present and possible future for this critical technology. more>>

Optics Innovations

Marketing your Photonics Company in the 21st Century

Patricia Daukantas

Whether you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, a company president or a technical staffer angling to move into management, you need to know how modern marketing works. more>>


Retaining Talented Women Scientists: Time to Try Harder

Ursula Keller

Thirty years into her academic career, the author finds that the issue of women in science is much more complicated than she had initially thought. more>>