The Sound of Light

Juli 1, 2009

Together with his research team, Professor Vasilis Ntziachristos from the Helmholtz Zentrum Munich, Germany and the Technical University Munich, Germany developed a new technology to make light audible. The technique, called multi-spectral opto-acoustic tomography (MSOT), combines light and ultrasound to visualize fluorescent proteins that are seated several centimeters deep into living tissue.
The researchers used a genetically modified adult zebra fish which carried fluorescent pigments in its tissue. They illuminated the fish from multiple angles using flashes of laser light that are absorbed by the fluorescent pigments in the fish. The pigments absorb the light, a process that causes slight local increases of temperature, which in turn result in tiny local volume expansions. This happens very quickly and creates small shock waves. In effect, the short laser pulse gives rise to an ultrasound wave that the researchers pick up with an ultrasound microphone. To analyze the resulting acoustic patterns, a computer is attached. The computer uses specially developed mathematical formulas to evaluate and interpret the specific distortions caused by scales, muscles, bones and internal organs to generate a three-dimensional image. In the future this technology may facilitate the examination of tumors or coronary vessels in humans.
www.helmholtz-muenchen.de/en

Multi-spectral opto-acoustic tomography or MSOT allows the investigation of subcellular processes in live organisms.

Multi-spectral opto-acoustic tomography or MSOT allows the investigation of subcellular processes in live organisms.

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LASER World of PHOTONICS: Positive Results

Juni 25, 2009

With 1,040 exhibitors (2007: 1,008), the exposition LASER World of PHOTONICS 2009 (June 15-18, Munich, Germany) set a new record. The percentage of companies coming from outside Germany rose from 53% in 2007 to 57% this year. The exhibition area was expanded from three halls to four, which brought the total to 42,000 m² of floor space. This additional space particularly benefited the two largest exhibition segments, “Lasers and Optronics” and “Lasers and Laser Systems for Manufacturing.” With over 24,000 attending professionals, the trade show organizer’s expectations were exceeded by a small margin (2007: 26,655). A slight drop in the number of attendees from Germany is primarily due to the lower number of attending professionals from the industrial sector, which has been hit particularly hard by the current economic difficulties.
www.world-of-photonics.net


Lasers and Electro-Optics in Baltimore

Mai 27, 2009

The 2009 Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics (CLEO) and The International Quantum Electronics Conference (IQEC) will come to Baltimore Convention Center, US from May 31 to June 5, 2009. The 5-day event features high-quality, cutting-edge optics and photonics programming, tutorials, special symposia, short courses and a full program of networking and social events. PhotonXpo – the exhibit at CLEO, also debuting this year, will feature 350 participating companies showcasing every facet of the optics and photonics industry.
www.cleoconference.org

The Baltimore Convention Center

The Baltimore Convention Center


New Technique to Receive Sharper Images

April 29, 2009

A new imaging method that could help to build more powerful microscopes and other optical devices by producing sharper images and a wider field of view has been developed by Princeton researches. The research was led by Jason Fleischer, assistant professor of electrical engineering and co-written with two graduate students Christopher Barsi and Wenjie Wan. The new method takes advantage of the unusual properties of nonlinear optical materials in which light rays mix with each other in complex ways. Thanks to the mixing of rays, information that would otherwise be lost manages to reach the detector. Therefore this picture would be rich in detail but it would also be distorted. To capture this otherwise lost visual information, the researchers used a hologram. The hologram is a special type of photograph which records „phase“ – a light property which measures the time and location of a wave peak. They also combined data from a normal camera. Then they created a simplified flow of light through a nonlinear material and developed a computer algorithm that takes the distorted image and works backwards to calculate the visual information at every point in space between the image and the object.
www.princeton.edu

An object illuminated by light reflects rays in many different directions (gray arrows). Left: With a normal lens, some rays are captured and refract towards a camera while others are missed, resulting in a blurry image with a limited field of view. Right: The new method uses a nonlinear material. The original rays are altered and new rays (red) are generated. The resulting picture is scrambled, but a computer algorithm can undo the mixing and yield a sharp, wide-field image.

An object illuminated by light reflects rays in many different directions (gray arrows). Left: With a normal lens, some rays are captured and refract towards a camera while others are missed, resulting in a blurry image with a limited field of view. Right: The new method uses a nonlinear material. The original rays are altered and new rays (red) are generated. The resulting picture is scrambled, but a computer algorithm can undo the mixing and yield a sharp, wide-field image. (Image: Christopher Barsi)


SPIE Europe Optics and Optoelectronics

April 16, 2009

New applications for EUV, VUV, and x-ray technologies and other topics in photonics will be among highlights of SPIE Europe Optics and Optoelectronics to be held April 20-23, 2009 in Prague, Czech Republic. Approximately 450 papers will be presented in 10 technical conferences on:

– Harnessing Relativistic Plasma Waves as Novel Radiation Sources from Terahertz to X-rays and Beyond
– EUV and X-ray Optics: Synergy between Laboratory and Space
– Damage to VUV, EUV, and X-ray Optics
– Metamaterials
– Nonlinear Optics and Applications
– Photon Counting Applications
– Quantum Optics and Quantum Information Transfer and Processing
– Optical Sensors
– Photonic Crystal Fibres
– Holography: Advances in Classical Holography and Modern Trends

www.spie.org/optics-optoelectronics.xml

Prague, Czech Republic (source: pixelio.de)

Prague, Czech Republic (source: pixelio.de)


FEI Expands Presence in Mineralogy Market

Januar 15, 2009

FEI Company has acquired substantially all of the assets of Intellection Holdings of Brisbane, Australia. Intellection’s primary product is the Qemscan automated mineralogy system. The purchase increases FEI’s presence in the automated mineralogy market for mining companies. The purchase price was approximately $2.8 million. Automated mineralogy systems identify minerals in polished sections of drill core, particulate, or lump materials and quantify a wide range of characteristics, such as mineral abundance, grain size, and liberation.
www.fei.com
www.intellection.com.au