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    SPIE Photonics West 2011 Onsite News

    SPIE Photonics West

    Thursday 27 January

    Wednesday 26 January

    Tuesday 25 January

    Monday 24 January

    Sunday 23 January

    Saturday 22 January

    View the event photo gallery

    View the exhibition photo gallery

    Thursday 27 January

    'Best meeting' yet ends with highest attendance to date

    The final count was close to 19,390 people who attended Photonics West this year -- that's 6% higher than the previous high count, set just last year. There were increases in both the technical program and day visitors, and comments from people leaving Moscone Center at the end of the day were 100% positive.

    As James Wynne (IBM Watson Research Center) put it, "Photonics West is the best meeting I have ever attended because the conference and exhibition bring interdisciplinary science -- physics, chemistry, biology and more -- together with engineering. It's fantastic."

    SPIE Biomedical Optics exhibition

    Wednesday 26 January

    Exhibitors stay busy ... very busy

    With 1,162 exhibiting companies to see, the exhibition continued to draw crowds on Wednesday to both North and South halls. The enthusiasm of the steady flow of visitors in the aisles was reflected by the imagination exhibited in the booths -- and not just in new applications and new products, but the booths themselves. Exhibitors employed everything from magicians to superheroes to tell their stories.

    SPIE Photonics West exhibition

    Metamaterials -- acting like electronics

    Nader Engheta's LASE plenary overview of how metamaterials will drive the convergence of electronic and photonic circuit design principles was inspiring. Metamaterials allow the complex engineering of the permeability and permittivity parameters in light-matter interactions. Indeed much of the parameter space of conductivity, non-linearity, and chirality present in electronics has analogs in photonics.

    Engheta described how extreme-parameter metamaterials can be used to create structures that mimic electronic circuits with properties like capacitance, resistance, and impedance that can be used in combination to create things like timing circuits and oscillators. There are unique twists to the analogy, such as the observation that in photonic circuits the direction of illumination determines whether the circuit acts like it is connected in parallel or in series. By bringing the design methodologies of electronics to photonic circuits, Engheta foresees a way to accelerate the development of nanoscale photonics devices. For example, graphene makes it possible to make reflective surfaces using the surface plasmons polariton interaction. Engheta's group have also done a number of simulations of grapheme demonstrating the mechanism for creating photon diodes controlled by a magnetic field and a reflective cavity that can act as a photon capacitor.

    What does this all have to do with lasers? What Engheta is describing are the building blocks for lasers on the nanoscale: an oscillator, a reflective cavity, even waveguides. Only time will tell whether the detailed nanoscale engineering needed to bring these into reality will be successful.

    The Canadian Pavilion throws a party!

    Consul General Cassie Doyle, Consulate General of Canada, San Francisco/Silicon Valley was welcomed by SPIE President Katarina Svanberg to Photonics West. Ms. Doyle was there as a guest of the Canadian Pavilion, who threw a wine and Hors d'oevres reception in her honor. The pavilion held 25 Canadian optics and photonics companies.

    Honoring breakthroughs in photonics

    The Prism Awards for Photonics Innovation is an international competition that recognizes cutting-edge products that break conventional ideas, solve problems, and improve life through photonics. A gala banquet was held to announce the 2010 winners. View the winners at

    Tuesday 25 January

    Slammed? Swamped? It's all good on opening day of the exhibition

    The buzz in the exhibition halls was more of a continual roar as what promised to be record crowds flowed in on opening day. With half the booths each in North and South halls, there was plenty to see on all sides. Exhibitors trying to characterize the day happily offered words such as "slammed" and "swamped," and reported signing more business in the course of a morning than they typically anticipate doing in a full day.

    SPIE Biomedical Optics exhibition

    Your morning 'paper'?

    Conference chair L.-C. Chen of Kent State introduced Chang-Dong Kim of Korea's LG Display R&D Center. Kim, currently the vice president of LG leading the development of new devices, presented the challenges in developing e-paper display (EPD) technologies and LG's roadmap for tackling each of these challenges: the creation of considerably flexible displays, color displays, touch interfaces, large format displays, and new display modes. In response to a question from Chen as to how EPDs will compete with the conventional and prevalent display technology in the popular iPad, Kim said that EPDs cannot compete with the image quality of the iPad, but can serve as an alternative for low-power devices.

    Kim said that EPDs deliver good color and touch functionality and may soon replacing traditional newspapers and signage. Some of these displays are expected to be so inexpensive that they could be disposable. LG is the developer of what it bills as the world's largest tabloid display, a 19-inch flexible EPD.

    Co-chair Klaus Streubel (OSRAM) introduced Stefan Hell (Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry), best known for being the first to shatter Abbe's diffraction limit for optical resolution. Hell gave an excellent and simple explanation of how Abbe's equation (currently and prematurely written in stone on his famous statue) can be modified to accommodate imaging with visible light at the molecular scale. The simple key, he declared, was the ability to turn molecules on or off, meaning that if one can prevent fluorescence of individual molecules by irradiating them and inducing their spontaneous emission, the remaining molecules that can still fluoresce can be imaged at much higher resolution, as they are not obscured by the light from the now "off" molecules. This is the overarching and common principle behind many modern nanoscale microscopic techniques, such as STED, GSD, SSIM, GSDIM, RESOLFT, and PALM/STORM.

    Abbe's equation can then be revised with a simple factor in the denominator to accommodate, not a model that relies solely on wave theory, but also takes molecular states into account. Hell demonstrated how these techniques make not only imaging, but recording of molecular activities possible and showed videos of synaptic vesicles in the axion of living hippocampal neurons and colloidal crystal formation as examples of the power of this expanded form of Abbe's famous resolution equation.

    Fred Schubert (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute) introduced Eli Yablonovitch (University of California, Berkeley), who continued Hell's theme of simplicity. Yablonovitch, known for pioneering the photonic bandgap concept and coining the term "photonics crystal," showed how one can simplify plasmonics by modeling plasmons with circuit theory. He showed how a bulk plasmon can be modeled as an LC circuit with only an inductor and capacitor, how a surface plasmon can be modeled as an LC circuit with 3 circuit elements, and how a parallel plate plasmon can be described as a 5-element circuit.

    The secret to this simplified modeling, he stated, was in the use of the kinetic inductance rather than the ordinary inductance, which, he proved, comes from Ohm's law. Yablonovitch went further to show how a tapered transmission line works like a transformer, how the Purcell effect is really an RLC circuit property, and how optical antennas can be treated as a circuit, revealing that if one were to give a molecule an antenna, stimulated emission (which he declared as historically and currently overlooked) could, in fact, be faster than stimulated emission.

    SPIE 'Student Lunch with the Experts' and Newport Spectra-Physics Research Excellence Travel Awards

    SPIE awarded one of 32 education outreach grants at the luncheon to Baylor University - Prof. Linda Olafsen, who was on hand to accept the award. The funds were used to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the laser in Central Texas and to educate students, the general public and other scientists about the research and technologies enabled by lasers.

    Amirhossein Tehranchi won the John Kiel Scholarship established to honor SPIE founding member John Kiel. Tehranchi is a Ph.D. student in the Dept. of Electrical Engineering and Poly-Grames Research Center, at École Polytechnique de Montréal (University of Montreal). He has developed the design and optimization of novel devices including quasi-phase-matched apodized step-chirped gratings (SCG) for broadband second harmonic generation (SHG) with and without pump resonance and cascaded sum and difference frequency generation (SFG + DFG) using pump detuning and SCG for broad waveband conversion in nonlinear optical waveguides. Tehranchi receives a $10,000 honorariam.

    Other scholarships were awarded to Hacene M. Chaouch, Nadir Hossain, Meredith M. Lee, Pouya Maraghechi, and Matthew Shawn Sederberg.

    Continuing the level of support provided for SPIE students would not be possible without help from Newport-Spectra Physics. Company representatives at the luncheon were Hannah Noble, Kim Abair, Herman Chui, Sandeep Dedage, Beda Espinoza, Jim Fisher, Jay Jeong, Jim Kafka, and Keshav Kumar.

    Nineteen students received Newport and Spectra-Physics Research Excellence Travel Awards: Serap Aksu, Salvatore Campione, Ludwig De Clercq, Sarah Erickson, George Fercana, Liang Gao, Melanie Gault, Eric Glowacki, Dag Heinemann, Ninad Ingle, Stephanie Kennedy, Jong-Ha Lee, Wonju Lee, Jheng-Jie Liu, Paul McNamara, Gilad Sharon, Shivaranjani Shivalingaiah, Tristan Swedish, and Bowen Wang.

    Industry event: Silicon Photonics and Photonic Integrated Circuits

    Demand for smaller and cheaper optical interconnections inside computers is a main driver for silicon photonics, which will create a new market of miniaturized, low-cost photonic components that can leverage the scale of CMOS manufacturing. Industry leaders discussed the frontier of silicon photonics and how this will revolutionize industries from computing and communication, to biomedicine and imaging.

    Panel Members were Bert-Jan Offrein (IBM Zürich Research Lab), Ashok Krishnamoorthy (Oracle/Sun Labs), Peter De Dobbelaere (Luxtera), Andy Weirich (OneChip Photonics), Michael Hochberg (Univ. of Washington), and Mehrdad Ziari (Infinera).

     SPIE Members: a view from the top!


    SPIE Members gathered on the 33rd floor of the San Francisco Hilton to enjoy a relaxing evening with colleagues and sumptuous desserts.


    Monday 24 January

    MOEMS-MEMS for green power, telecom, antibiotics

    Amit Lal (Cornell University) talked on applications of MEMS in the energy harvesting or energy conservation, Distributed sensor networks are very important for monitoring activity over large areas. Sensor networks can be used to watch for seismic activity, troop movement, traffic movement or just environmental changes. One limiting factor in the deployment of these systems is the energy required to operate the sensor and communicate the information along the network to a command center. This energy is usually provided by batteries which do not last long enough and are heavy and bulky.

    One potential MEMS-based solution is a micro-cantilever with a PZT layer that converts mechanical motion to electrical energy. The PZT layer is deposited on the arm of the micro-cantilever. A small radioactive source located below the tip of the cantilever is activated to oscillate the cantilever. Emission from the radioactive source creates a charge on the cantilever tip which causes the cantilever to bend towards the base electrode. Once the cantilever touches the base, the charge is neutralized and the cantilever springs into oscillation. The initial surge of current (producing on the order of 5 W of power) can power the transmission of the wireless signal from the sensors. The resonant vibration that continues for an extended period generate enough electricity (thru the PZT) to power the sensor. The process is then repeated as charge once again builds up on the cantilver tip. The half-life of the radioactive source is 100 years, so this device has potential for long-term use and reuse in power sensors or self powered RFID tags and many other potential applications.

    Hiroshi Toshiyoshi (University of Tokyo) illustrated the diversity of applications to which MEMS and MOEMS can contribute. Devices such as the variable optical attenuator (VOA) that were developed for telecom applications are finding their way into medical applications today. The particular implementation of the VOA uses a tilting MOEMS mirror to produce an offset in the alignment of two optical fibers thus creating a controllable insertion loss. The two fibers are aligned parallel and alongside each other, a lens collimates the light from the source fiber onto the MOEMS mirror surface, and the reflection is sent back thru the lens to the receiving fiber.When the MOEMS mirror is centrally aligned the insertion loss of the system is minimum. As the MOEMS mirror tilts, through the application of an electrostatic field, the loss can be increased up to 30 dB with a resolution of .1 dB.

    VOAs find application in telecom systems where they are used to balance the power of multiple optical signals propagating down individual transmission fibers. This MEMS technology is finding application in endoscopy where tilting mirrors are used to produce scans inside the body and form images of internal structures. For this application, the MOEMS mirror needed redesign to accommodate the required large field of view (large tile angles), but the underlying technology is the same. To further improve the safety of such devices for applications in vivo, the electrical signal for activating the mirror is no longer provided through a wire. Instead the device is powered by light. An optical signal is sent down a fiber to a photovoltaic device alongside the miniature mirror. By modulating the optical signal, the appropriate electrical signal can be locally generated to modulate themirror’s position. MOEMS-MEMS are proving to be very versatile devices enabling optical techniques across a broad range of application areas.

    Robert Austin (Princeton University) discussed his research on the evolution of cancer, and described how he used MOEMS technology in an experiment that accelerated the resistance of bacteria to a common antibiotic. While antibacterial resistance is generally thought todevelop after about a year, Austin’s experiment, which he called the “Death Galaxy,” showed that some bacteria could evolve a resistance to antibiotics in just five hours. Austin suggested that the technology may hold answers to questions about why some types of cancer develop a resistance to cancer chemotherapy.

    The dragon’s den: Practice in biophotonics entrepreneurship

    Nineteen aspiring entrepreneurs were able to polish their pitching skills in a biophotonics start-up challenge before four volunteer judges. Each was allowed two minutes to pitch a new venture to Sergey Egorov (Del Mar Photonics and Tech Coast Angels), Linda Smith (Ceres Technology), Adam Wax (Duke University), and Brandon Yee (Daylight Solutions).

    The top three walked away with sponsorship from Newport Spectra-Physics to attend the University of California, Davis, Biomedical Engineering Entrepreneurship Academy, and a travel stipend from SPIE. The five-day academy will help participants construct a business case, analyze markets, and develop a network of connections to help drive their new ventures:

    Top winners were:

    First place: Hariharan Subramanian (Northwestern University), Screening for lung cancer using partial wave spectroscopic microscopy.

    Second place: Chang Won (Temple University), Detecting malignant tumors with tactile imaging system.

    Third place: Natan Shaked (Duke University), InCh microscope: compact and portable quantitative phase microscope for label-free cell imaging.

    Honorable mention went to Jerome Lapointe (Ecole Polytechnique de Montréal), Michelle Xu (University of Toronto), Behnam Molavi (University of British Columbia), Babak Shadgan (University of British Columbia) and Yuan Luo (MIT).

    SPIE Fellows welcome new inductees

    The SPIE Fellows Luncheon started with a tribute to Fellow Robert E. Fischer. Fischer was honored for his immeasurable contributions to SPIE's Educational Programs. SPIE President-Elect Eustace Dereniak introduced Fischer, noting "Bob has taught somewhere around 200 courses for SPIE -- we're not sure of the exact number, but our database lists 171, and we know he was teaching for a number of years before that database was even created!"

    Eustace Dereniak and Robert Fischer

    SPIE Fellow Federico Capasso (Harvard University), who developed the quantum cascade laser (QCL) at Bell Labs in 1994, gave the Fellows luncheon keynote talk. Commercialization of QCLs "is in full swing," Capasso said. QCLs are used as hand-held beacons for illumination by military personnel today and are enabling frequent discoveries in spectroscopy, such as measuring trace gases in the troposphere and stratosphere. Advancements in mid-IR frequency combs will open new frontiers in molecular
    spectroscopy, he predicted.

    Federico Capasso

    ABET planning

    SPIE hosted a kick-off workshop to draft Optics and Photonics Criteria for ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) accreditation. The Society has been selected for a lead role in the process.

    ABET planning

    A juggling act

    Women in Optics speaker Anita Mahadevan-Jansen (Vanderbilt University) urged other women in science to follow their dreams and "seize the moment," saying there is never a perfect time to have a baby, submit a proposal, take a sabbatical, or do a number of other things that women scientists often do, she said.

    An SPIE Fellow (along with her husband, Duco Jansen), Mahadevan-Jansen said that although some scientists are successful compartmentalizing their lives, she found that she couldn't separate her professional life from her personal life. "The professional me is the personal me," she said.

    Her presentation about juggling family, teaching, research and service resonated with a number of students at the presentation. "It's good to see somebody who has done it, and she didn't seem to be particularly stressed out," said Deanna Thompson, a PhD candidate at the University of California at Davis Center for Biophotonics.

    Anita Mahadevan-Janse

    Teatro Photonica!

    Approximately 2,500 SPIE Photonics West attendees enjoyed a night of photonics-inspired "theatrics," conversations with colleagues, and food tasting from around the world.

    Teatro Photonica

    Sunday 23 January

    BiOS exhibit: the place to meet

    Vendors and users of biomedical optics, imaging, and nanotechnology tools and applications for medical diagnostics, treatment, and research wrapped up the weekend's exhibit at the end of the day on Sunday. Characterized by exhibitors as "the place we meet our customers" in biomedical optics and biophotonics, the event once again provided the opportunity for suppliers to learn more about what customers want, get new ideas from specifiers, and make new contacts from around the world.

    LEDs at work for art

    Holography pioneer Hans Bjelkhagen (Glyndwr Univ.), chair of the Practical Holography conference (7957), described a new touring exhibition in the United Kingdom that is bringing priceless museum objects to a wider audience without risk of damage or theft. By using color holography and four or more laser wavelengths, color error is reduced dramatically and a 180-degree field of view is achieved. Among the artifacts rendered in this way are an Iron Age coin, a Bronze Age axe head, and a decorated jawbone of a horse -- the only piece of art ever discovered in the UK that dates to the end of the ice age 14,000 years ago. Bjelkhagen said much work remains to perfect the technique, with LED lights offering the potential to refine the color reproduction by matching the wavelengths of the recording lasers.

    BiOS 'Student Lunch with the Experts'

    A crowd of over 140 people gathered for the popular BiOS Student Lunch with the Experts. SPIE President Katarina Svanberg, Lund University, Sweden, advised students to take this opportunity to network with professionals.

    Two SPIE Education Outreach Grants were awarded. Alpha Eta Mu Beta - Biomedical Engineering Honor Society, Texas A&M University Chapter's Ryan Shelton accepted one award. Shelton said the funds will be used to increase optics and photonics awareness locally as well as regionally.

    The Optics Institute of Southern California's, Scott Rowe accepted the other award. Funds will be used to assemble and distribute the Optricks Suitcases as part of the OISC and OSSC Optics Educational Outreach Programs.

    The D.J. Lovell Scholarship is presented annually and is SPIE's largest scholastic award. This scholarship is sponsored by SPIE with contributions from Labsphere, Inc. The 2010 honoree, Babak Shadgan, received his award along with an $11,000 honorarium. 

    Other scholarships were presented to:

    • Soroush Abbasizarglaeh
    • Tony Joseph Akl
    • Oscar D. Ayala
    • Shruthi Baskaran
    • Rui Liu
    • Adi Sheinfeld
    • Johnny Tam

    Best paper awards 

    James Loudin received the Pascal Rol Award for Best Paper in Ophthalmic Technologies during the Ophthalmic Technologies XXI conference. The award was presented by Session Chair, Fabrice Manns, University of Miami.


    The PicoQuant Young Investigator Award was awarded to two individuals this year. Daniel Aquino for technology, and Julie Biteen for biology. The awards were presented by Single Molecule Spectroscopy and Imaging IV Conference Chairs Zygmunt K. Gryczynski, Univ. of North Texas Health Science Ctr. at Fort Worth; and Rainer Erdmann, PicoQuant GmbH.

    Saturday 22 January

    Strong start to Photonics West with a big day for Biomedical Optics!

    SPIE Photonics West opened at Moscone Center Saturday morning with more papers and more exhibiting companies than ever before.Biomedical Optics hot topics Biomedical Optics (BiOS) conferences have 10% more papers this year than last, and chairs report being very pleased with the content.

    "The quality of papers is improving every year," said Nikiforos Kollias (Johnson & Johnson), who with Bernard Choi (Beckman Laser Institute and Medical Clinic) and Haishan Zeng (British Columbia Cancer Agency Research Ctr.) chairs the conference on Photonics in Dermatology and Plastic Surgery (7883A). "We're getting papers from all over the world."

    The two-day Biomedical Optics exhibition was strong as well, with more than 180 companies -- a record number -- on the floor, and a good flow of traffic throughout the day.

    Keys to the future

    Optical Techniques in Neurosurgery, Brain Imaging, and Neurobiology (7883E), chaired by Henry Hirschberg (Beckman Laser Institute and Medical Clinic) and Steen Madsen (Univ. of Nevada, Las Vegas), was among several conferences seeing overflow rooms on the high-energy opening day.

    Papers on nanoparticles in neurosurgery and fluorescence-guided resection received particular interest, as did papers on robotics in surgery, brain imaging and neurobiology, optical tomography and spectroscopy of tissue, and photonics and ultrasound for imaging and sensing.

    Among opening-day technical talks, Conference Chair Daniel Farkas provided a glimpse into the future in a keynote for Imaging, Manipulation, and Analysis of Biomolecules, Cells, and Tissues (7902). Looking ahead, he said, the key to improved therapy for the major diseases such as cancer will lie in the ability to look at single cells in the living human body. While today that is just an idea, Farkas said that optical imaging may one day provide that capability. He sees major advances over the next 30 years in minimally invasive surgery, molecular medicine, and regenerative medicine, if that goal can be achieved.

    'Hot topics' live up to their billing

    A packed audience of approximately 1,000 who chose the annual BiOS "hot topics" session for their Saturday evening activity were rewarded with compelling updates on several of the most promising new photonics technologies, and tributes to two pioneers in the field of biomedical optics.

    Alexander Oraevsky (Fairway Medical Technologies) led off the technical talks with a look at 3D acoustic tomography for imaging of vascular and other structures in the body. In this technique, a fast laser pulse and acoustic technology are used to create a 3D image of internal organs, structure, and blood vessels. The 3D image is created by rotating the excitation and receivers around the body, and provides quantitative analysis of internal structures such as tumors. The method can be used to monitor the progress of treatment for diseases like cancer.

    Ophthalmology is still the dominant application for OCT (optical coherence tomography) but the literature in other applications is growing rapidly, said David Huang (Casey Eye Institute). The latest advance in ophthalmic OCT is the use of Fourier transform OCT for creating 3D images with a resolution of 5 microns. However, swept-source OCT is being commercialized. Other advances in technique and application are dual-wavelength operation in the two water windows at 800 nm and 1060 nm for deeper penetration and the use of OCT in corneal and cataract surgery -- "a very hot topic" and potentially a large industry, Huang said.

    Fluorescence lifetime imaging is the latest technique to be applied to the management of cardiovascular diseases, said Laura Marcu (Univ. of California, Davis). Raman spectroscopy as been used, but the time-resolved technique (TRFS) has the advantage of not being sensitive to the natural absorber (blood) in the optical path. Major issues to overcome for this approach are expanding the point measurement into an image, and increasing the limited penetration depth. The first obstacle is being addressed by employing a probe that produces a line scan coupled with a temporal depth scan. From this an image can be generated that characterizes the observed plaque. The limited penetration depth is being addressed by combining the technique with existing OCT methods. A prototype intravascular catheter has been developed to advance the progress in this field.

    Karsten König (Saarland Univ. and JenLab) explained the advantage of clinical multiphoton tomography in using endogenous fluorophores instead of intorduced probe particles, but suffers from concerns of safety of exposure levels of the excitation. Studies on the safety of the radiation conclude that multiphoton tomography poses no worse danger than a 15-minute walk in sunlight. The technique is being used for skin imaging for the early detection of melanoma, dermatitis, and other skin diseases. New developments involve combining this technique with CARS (coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering) for noninvasive (no biopsy, no staining) monitoring of wound healing and cancer treatment.

    Paras Prasad (Univ. of Buffalo) described a multiplexed biophotonic platform for analysis, detection, and monitoring of macro-molecules such as DNA, RNA, lipids, and proteins. The theme of this work is to have the right tool available to track and analyze the dynamics of the properties of these molecules during the treatment processes of therapy. Techniques employed include FRET (Forster resonant energy transfer), CARS, SHG (second-harmonic generation), TPEF (two-photon excited fluorescence), and SFG (sum frequency generation). These are all implemented with the use of a picosecond frequency doubled YAG laser system coupled to a sophisticated microscopy platform. The goal is to map the dynamics of these molecules during chemotherapy to better understand the efficacy of the therapy.

    Many disorders of the brain currently are treated with drugs or electrical stimulation. Nearly a quarter of million people have implanted electrical probes in their brains for such stimulation. The problem with this approach is that it targets large areas of the brain instead of the discrete cells or location that cause the disorder. Ed Boyden (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) talked about work implementing light stimulated processes in the brain to address these disorders at the cellular level. The method utilizes adeno-associated viruses (AAV) to create light-sensitive centers in the brain which can then be stimulated by light pulses. Very small optical waveguides (fibers)vcan then be introduced in the brain to stimulate these sites. (See Boyden's presentation:

    Eric Mazur (Harvard Univ.) spoke on the application of femotsecond laser pulses producing pulses of high intensity but low energy because of the shortness of the optical pulse. These lasers have been used to produce cell transfection of DNA material which is an important first step in regeneration processes. The limitation is the low spatial effectiveness of the focused laser beam on individual cells. This is being addressed using plasmonic-enhancing array structures to provide multiple high-field locations over larger areas. The plasmonic structures are produced from tip-shaped etched silicon coated with a gold layer. The laser excitation generates the high fields at the tip of each structure in the array. Cells are also found to attach themselves to these tips and so multiple cells can be addressed simultaneously. Large-scale cell transfection can then be used to introduce either DNA for cell regeneration or drugs for treatment at the cellular level.

    Pioneers remembered

    Dasari Rao Ramachandra (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) highlighted two areas of Michael Feld's research, sensing glucose by spectroscopy, with the potential to replace daily needle-stick tests necessary for millions of individuals with diabetes with a non-invasive test, and 3D imaging cells by tomography with applications such as testing for malaria.

    A tribute to Britton Chance by Bruce Tromberg (Beckman Laser Institute, Univ. of California, Irvine) and Arjun Yodh (Univ. of Pennsylvania) included archival video interviews with Chance, whose work in optical imaging of the brain and other areas of biomedical optics was often "25 years ahead of where everyone else was," Tromberg noted.

    Both Feld and Chance died in 2010.

    Feld's work will be further honored with a special memorial session on Wednesday as part of the Optical Biopsy conference (7895).

    Chance has been honored with the naming of the new SPIE Britton Chance Award for Biomedical Optics, to be awarded starting in 2012.

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