EOS young photonics award winners announced

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The European Optical Society (EOS) has announced the winners for the LIGHT2015 Young Women in Photonics Awards and its LIGHT2015 Young Entrepreneur in Photonics Award. The awards recognise young scientists who have made outstanding contributions in a range of prize categories.

The prize for the fundamental category was awarded to Dr Na Liu for her contribution to nanophotonics and nanoplasmonics by establishing the 3D stacking of plasmonic structures, enabling the manufacture of complex plasmonic functional devices. Seppo Honkanen, president of the EOS remarked: ‘Her work has transformed plasmonics from a fundamental field in science into the applications realm.’

On the applied/engineering category, Dr Nathalie Vermeulen has been awarded for introducing a nonlinear process of Coherent Anti-Stokes Raman Scattering and employed it to conceptualise a novel cooling technique for Raman lasers. Honkanen said: ‘She also came up with a groundbreaking phase matching approach for on-chip nonlinear wavelength converters, enabling device manufacturing in photonic foundries with standard fabrication rules.’

Dr Garret Cole, the Young Entrepreneur in Photonics laureate, won for ‘the development of a low-noise optical coating process that enables the integration of single-crystal semiconductor films onto arbitrary optical substrates. Cole was also recognised for his founding of the high-tech start-up company Crystalline Mirror Solutions.

Special recognition to young women in photonics will also go to Francesca Calegari (National Research Council of Italy – Institute for Photonics and Nanotechnologies) and Camille-Sophie Bres (Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne) for their contributions to photonics.

Honkanen said: ‘We were delighted to receive such a large number of outstanding applications for the Young Women in Photonics Award, and the jury wishes to extend its thanks to all applicants. With such a broad range of research areas, we decided in the end to give two awards in different categories: fundamental and applied/engineering. The large number of excellent candidates suggests that measures to attract women into photonics are having a positive effect, but we believe there is still very much more to do. As a legacy of the LIGHT2015 project, the EOS will therefore plan to continue giving these awards in the future, in connection with its bi-annual EOSAM symposium’.

The award ceremony will be held in Munich during the World of Photonic Congress on Wednesday 24 June at 16:00-16:20.