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In memoriam: Pavel Tománek, professor and researcher in photonics, optoelectronics, and nanotechnology

22 June 2017

Pavel Tománek | Image Courtesy of Czech Television
Pavel Tománek

SPIE Member Pavel Tománek, long-term chair of Photonics Prague and professor of Applied Physics at the Brno University of Technology, Brno, Czech Republic, died 30 May 2017. He was 74 years old.

In his youth, Tománek wanted to be a top athlete, but a ski accident changed his life path and instead, he became a world-class expert in the fields of photonics, optoelectronics, and nanotechnology.

He joined the staff at Brno University of Technology (BUT) in 1971. For more than four decades he conducted research and taught with the faculty of Electrical Engineering and Communication at the university. He was also head of BUT’s Lab of Optical Nanometrology. Over the course of his career he completed extended internships in Algeria and France, where he also lectured.

Tománek was an avid supporter and organizer of scientific conferences. He co-organized many scientific conferences around the world, from Japan to the United States. His contributions as long-time chair of Photonics Prague, the International Conference on Photonics, Devices and Systems in his home country, will be recognized this August as the eighth edition of the event will be dedicated to his memory.

He was a steady and active member of SPIE. He served as a member of SPIE/CS - The International Society for Optical Engineering / Czech & Slovak Chapter and a member of Czech Committee for Optics of the International Commission for Optics representing SPIE. He was an author of hundreds of research papers and textbooks, including editing and authoring over 30 SPIE proccedings.

The Conference Committee of Photonics Prague 2017 released a statement regarding Tománek's passing and included a short documentary by Czech Television about Tománek and his work – a glimpse into “…the world of unimaginably and fantastically miniature dimensions.” (in Czech)