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In memoriam: Peter Powers, nonlinear optics expert

19 May 2014

photo of Peter Powers

SPIE Fellow Peter E. Powers, the Mann chair in the sciences and associate professor of physics and electro-optics at University of Dayton (USA), died 10 May after a long battle with cancer. He was 49.

Powers, a University of Dayton faculty member since 1997, was an expert in nonlinear optics, especially parametric processes, and its application to other branches of physics and applied physics.

He was known for developing innovative and practical frequency-conversion sources from the mid-infrared to the terahertz spectrum. Tools such as the seeded optical parametric generator are vital for a wide range of applications in spectroscopy, environmental science, safety and security, biomedical imaging, and trace gas detection and sensing.

"Peter Powers was an exemplary faculty member," said Paul Benson, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at University of Dayton. Benson noted that Powers was internationally renowned for his scholarship in nonlinear optics and was a winner of the College's award for outstanding scholarship.

Tony Saliba, dean of the School of Engineering, called Powers "a brilliant, compassionate man, researcher and faculty member" who was "a true role model with a humble spirit, a love for the UD family, and a remarkable ability to build bridges across units within the university and beyond the walls of our campus."

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