Ocean Optics grant winners announced

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Ocean Optics has announced the winners of this year’s Phase I Blue Ocean Grants.

The open innovation programme seeks novel ideas and technologies with the potential to change the world for the better, and lead to eventual market commercialisation. In its second year, the programme has grown increasingly competitive, with exceptional applications received from all over the world.

The grants are divided into two phases. Phase I grants are issued to fund initial evaluation and development of ideas and technologies to the proof-of-concept phase. These $10,000 awards help applicants design and develop new photonics technologies and applications.

Phase II grants will be issued to nurture a proposed technology through proof-of-concept in a way that enables the potential of market commercialisation. Phase II awards are much larger – up to $100,000 – and will be announced later this year.

This year’s Phase I winners are:

Anthony Filippi and Burak Güneralp from the Department of Geography, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, and Lee Tarpley from the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center, Beaumont, Texas, for their proposal: 'Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function Effect on Arsenic and Water-Stress Detection in Rice';

Damian Gardiner and Philip Hands from the Centre of Molecular Materials for Photonics and Electronics at the University of Cambridge, UK, for their proposal: 'Printable Laser Sources for Anti-Counterfeiting Applications'; and

Zheng Peichao, from the College of Optoelectronic Engineering, Chongqing University of Posts and Telecommunications, Chongqing, China for the proposal entitled: 'Low-Cost On-line Spectra Measurement Device for Metal Ions in Water'.

Recipients were chosen by Ocean Optics and an independent panel of photonics industry experts based on potential to change the world for the better, out-of-the-box thinking, technical merit and potential commercial viability.