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International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies: SPIE Press Kit

The Art of Light and Technology

Students at the University of Applied Sciences in Offenburg designed a set of striking posters in support of the International Year of Light.

Particles of light are the key ingredients for science and technology, from smartphones to medical imaging to synchrotrons. The United Nations' International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies 2015 (IYL2015) initiative will show the world how optical and photonic technologies are vital to their futures and development of the whole society. 

Light in medicine, biology, and renewable energy

In celebration for the IYL2015, the SPIE Journal of Photonics for Energy will include a special section on education and training in light for energy. It will center on new developments and innovations for teaching in the field of photonics and optics as applied to renewable energy. 

In addition the June 2015 issue of the SPIE Journal of Biomedical Optics will feature a special section called "Light for Life: International Year of Light 2015." This special section, which is closed for submissions, will highlight the revolutionizing impact that light and light-based technologies have on medicine and biology today. We solicit papers that report on major developments in different fields of biomedical optics that have a significant impact in their contribution to better health.

Light Beyond the Bulb: an open-source international exhibition program

The fee-image program offers a unique opportunity for anyone around the globe to organize and present a high-quality image exhibition. The materials and the images were crowd-sourced then expert-curated for science content, stunning beauty and ability to engage the general public. To find an exhibition near you, see the exhibit schedule.

Eye-catching images offered for displays showing light science, light-based technologies (25 January 2015)

 IYL Resources

IYL2015 website
Fact sheet
The UN proclamation announcement
IYL video from
United Nations IYL website
United Nations IYL blog

Free! IYL2015 materials

'What is Light?' poster
Presentation to inform and educate

IYL Events

Check out the photo gallery from the IYL2015 opening ceremony in Paris 19-20 January. 
Complete list of IYL events

IYL in the news

SPIE press releases

Press contacts

John Dudley (Europe) Email:

Krisinda Plenkovich (N. America) Email:

Amy Nelson (SPIE Public Relations Manager) Email: 

Jean-Paul Ngome Abiaga (UNESCO HQ Paris) Email:

Joe Niemela (IYL Secretariat at UNESCO-ICTP) Email:

Contact to be placed on the mailing list for updates.

Photo contest

The SPIE IYL Photo Contest was sponsored by SPIE Professional magazine to raise awareness about the vital role that light and light-based technologies play in daily life.

photo titled Over the Rainbow

Paul Reiffer's winning image is titled "Over the Rainbow."

IYL Photo contest winner, Joy of Light

Second-place winner is Susanta Mukherjee's "Joy of Light."
Neon Nights
The third-place prize was for Ian Bell's "Neon Nights."
photo from SPIE International Year of Light Photo Contest
Nearly 2,000 members of the general public and the optics and photonics community chose Handi Laksono's image, "Studying," for the contest's People's Choice Award.
Please contact us for high-resolution images, suitable for print.