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LaserFest and SPIE Student Chapters

Begun as a collaboration between the American Physical Society, the Optical Society, IEEE Photonics Society, and SPIE, LaserFest is a yearlong celebration of the 50th anniversary of the laser, which was invented in 1960. From DVD players to eye surgery, the laser is one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century-one that has revolutionized the way we live.

To encourage the global network of SPIE Student Chapters to organize public outreach events during LaserFest, the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the laser. To collect data on the effectiveness of laser education supported by SPIE.

Chapters are invited to submit an application for funding to support their proposed outreach activities. Chapters can request grants up to a maximum of $750. Selected chapters will participate in hosting events and complete their reporting by the end of the 2010 calendar year. Chapters will post their scheduled events on the worldwide calendar of events on the LaserFest website. Chapters may choose to create their own activity or support the Hit-the-Target curriculum.

Option 1: Creating your own activity
Chapters are encouraged to demonstrate a laser concept in an engaging way. To help generate ideas, you may wish to browse through the following links:
Chapters are not limited to these activities, but rather may gain some inspiration toward the development of an original activity. Selected applicants will receive funding and an assortment of supplemental materials (laser pointers, posters, pens, etc.).

Option 2: Supporting the Hit-the-Target curriculum
Based on Module #1 of the Hands-on-Optics kit, the “Hit-the-Target” laser kit contains everything needed for the activity including lasers, mirrors, string and masking tape. One laser kit will allow up to 20 people at a time (5 teams of 4) to participate in the activity. For more information, please see the Hit-the-Target Manual. Selected applicants will receive a Hit-the-Target kit and an assortment of supplemental materials (laser pointers, posters, pens, etc.).

Applications that produce interactive demonstrations or activities featuring lasers, discuss the impact of the laser on society, and teach the science behind the laser will rank highest. Outreach should be aimed at the 10-18 age group.

  • 22 April 2010: Proposal due
  • 3 May 2010: Notification of acceptance
  • Throughout 2010: Conduct outreach activity(ies)
  • 31 December 2010: Final report due (paper or video)
  • The SPIE logo, the LaserFest logo, and the URLs (spie.org and www.LaserFest.org) must be displayed in materials and publicity for the activity.
  • A fact sheet or instructional segment about the science and technology of lasers must be developed and distributed at events.
  • Measurements of outreach including audience demographics, feedback, and efficacy must be conducted by grant recipients. SPIE will provide an online reporting form.
  • All activities and people involved in conducting these activities will adhere to the highest standards of safety and professional behavior while providing a safe environment and observing applicable rules, regulations and laws.
  • A final report on all activities performed must be submitted to SPIE by 31 December 2010. You may choose to submit a written report or a video report.