Two research groups, using very different materials and approaches, have recently fashioned optical and photonic components that they claim are far thinner than previously demonstrated devices. In one study, the authors report creating “the thinnest and lightest solar cells demonstrated to date”, using a flexible organic substrate…. Read more

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In computer-generated holography, images are produced from digitally generated holographic interference patterns. The hologram can then be printed onto a mask or film for illumination by a coherent light source. Computer-generated holograms (CGHs) have a wide range of applications… Read more

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Transparent metamaterials under development could enable computer chips and interconnecting circuits that use light instead of electrons to process and transmit data, representing a potential leap in performance. Read more

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Freeform optics technology allows telescope mirrors to take almost any shape, potentially improving image quality over a larger field of view. Prompted by advances in computer-controlled fabrication and testing, NASA engineers are now using freeform optics to explore cost-effective alternatives to more traditional space telescope missions… Read more

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Laser diodes that are fabricated from the aluminum gallium indium nitride (AlGaInN) material system are emerging as a technology for defense and security applications. Conventional underwater communications, which are achieved acoustically, are often associated with very slow data rates and short reaches. They are also particularly susceptible to interception… Read more here

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Materials that allow light to pass through without distortion are possible, according to a new set of calculations by an international team of researchers. When a light wave travels through free space, its intensity can be the same everywhere but as soon as it hits an obstacle, the wave is altered. Scattering and diffraction lead [..]

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The freeform revolution continues to redefine mainstream optics fields. Specific applications of freeform optics are currently prevented, however, because there is a lack of accurate metrology methods to guide efficient fabrication. The wide and flexible design space of freeform optics allows the design of new cutting-edge optical system concepts and form factors. Read more here [..]

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