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SPIE 2008 Vice-President Ralph James named OSA Fellow

Ralph B. James, Associate Laboratory Director for Energy, Environment and National Security at Brookhaven National Laboratory and 2008 Vice-President of SPIE, has been named a Fellow of the Optical Society of America.

He was recognized for "exceptional technical accomplishments and leadership leading to advances in nonlinear optics and optoelectronic sensors for lasers, spectroscopy and imaging."

James studies how the properties of semiconductors change when exposed to intense laser pulses. His data are used to make infrared lasers work effectively for a wide variety of applications, from medical to military. This research also involves the use of high-intensity laser pulses to thermally process semiconductor crystals for producing solar cells. In related work, James developed a new class of small, solid-state radiation detectors that can efficiently detect both x-rays and gamma rays at room temperature. They can also identify specific isotopes responsible for the radiation. These detectors are used in a variety of applications, including medical imaging, nuclear nonproliferation, environmental monitoring, and nuclear and space sciences.

James has held numerous volunteer posts for SPIE, and recently served as chair of the Society's Engineering, Science and Technology Policy Committee, and as a member of the Audit Committee. He has also co-chaired the Hard X-Ray and Gamma-Ray Detector Physics series of conferences at the annual SPIE Optics + Photonics symposium. He became a Fellow of SPIE in 1999.

View Brookhaven Laboratory News release.