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CLEO/IQEC/PHAST: show preview

05 May 2004

CLEO and IQEC return to the west coast of the US on 16-21 May and will be co-located with the OSA's latest venture, PhAST. Here we preview the technical conferences and highlight some of the products making their debut at the exhibition.

From Opto & Laser Europe May 2004.

Delegates attending this year's Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics (CLEO) and International Quantum Electronics Conference (IQEC) have a busy week ahead of them in San Francisco in May. The Optical Society of America (OSA) has put together what it says is the largest CLEO to date, and is also launching an event called Photonic Applications Systems Technologies (PhAST).

"PhAST is the product of many years of discussion about how to address the needs of the more engineering-orientated researchers," explains Steve Brueck, one of the general chairs of PhAST. "What we are trying to do is broaden the industry participation to more of the people involved in applications."

Now entering its 23rd year, CLEO/IQEC is renowned for showcasing fundamental science and the latest optical breakthroughs. The OSA believes that by running PhAST alongside CLEO and IQEC, it is offering attendees a "one-stop shop": everything from basic science right through to applications.

PhAST launches on Monday 17 May with a welcome reception and three keynote speakers addressing biophotonics instrumentation, photonics in nanotechnology and the commercialization of semiconductor photonics respectively. Tuesday morning sees two more keynotes on lasers in manufacturing and photonics in homeland and national security, followed by a three-day programme of technical presentations.

Unlike CLEO and IQEC, PhAST has a great many invited papers. Brueck says that the organizing committee has worked hard to put together a programme of top speakers presenting the very latest applications of laser technology. PhAST has a total of 62 invited speakers and 11 contributed papers.

Interaction in action "We have also set aside much more time for interaction between the delegates and the speakers," says Brueck. "We have asked the speakers to plan to stay right to the end of their session to network."

Brueck predicts that two popular events will be the lunch with industry leaders and the business-management programme. "The lunch is again in the spirit of getting people together and getting them talking," he says. "It's an excellent networking opportunity." Lunch guests include Nobel prize-winner Steve Chu, Spectra-Physics' advanced R&D director Jim Kafka and DARPA programme manager John Carrano.

Delegates can sign up to attend this lunch when registering for PhAST, but space is limited to 100 people and a separate registration fee is required. PhAST delegates can, however, attend the business-management programme free of charge. Put together by Milton Chang, it covers business strategy, start-up issues and management technique. It also includes a panel-discussion session.

It is important to note that delegates who have already registered to attend CLEO/IQEC will have to pay a small additional fee to attend any of the PhAST presentations. There is also the option of registering to only attend PhAST.

While PhAST concentrates on the applications of laser technology, CLEO and IQEC will once again showcase cutting-edge research in optics and photonics. Together CLEO and IQEC have a total of 1651 papers scheduled for presentation.

CLEO has 83 invited papers and 1037 contributed papers, of which 242 will be presented in the three poster sessions. IQEC has 57 invited speakers and 419 contributed papers, of which 112 have been designated a poster presentation.

According to CLEO technical programme chair Fred Heismann, there are 30% more presentations than last year. "We have seen a big increase in the number of papers from outside the US," he says. "We have also extended the scope of the conference to include two new categories: optical metrology and solid-state lighting."

Heismann predicts that attosecond pulses and terahertz spectroscopy will be hot topics at this year's meeting. Interested delegates should not miss the joint CLEO/IQEC sessions on them on Monday morning. No doubt they will be aired at Wednesday morning's plenary session as well.

There will be three plenary speakers this year: Anthony Siegman, Thomas Baer and Theodor Hänsch. Siegman's plenary, "Masers and lasers: looking back over 50 years", will help to mark the 50th anniversary of the maser. (A special symposium will also be held to celebrate this milestone - see Essential information.) A professor at Stanford University, US, Siegman will discuss the discovery, development and future applications of the laser.

Baer is the president of a US company called Arcturus. His plenary, "Resolving the molecular puzzle of cancer using laser microdissection and microgenomics", will highlight specific applications of optics and photonics in biotechnology.

Hänsch, the director of the Max-Planck-Institute for Quantum Optics in Germany, will discuss the generation of ultra-broadband optical-frequency combs from femtosecond modelocked lasers in his plenary entitled "From ultra precise spectroscopy to attosecond physics".

Broaden your knowledge base Delegates wanting to listen to talks outside their area of expertise should consider the nine tutorial presentations on offer this year. "The tutorials are a supplement to the normal invited and contributed papers," says Heismann. "They are part of the regular sessions and are usually very popular."

Running alongside the technical conference will be an integrated CLEO/IQEC/PhAST exhibit with in excess of 260 companies. Brueck says that a joint exhibit benefits both the exhibitor and the delegate.

"The exhibition benefits from having a larger range of people coming in," he says. "By integrating all the meetings we will provide the attendees with a wider range of options and the exhibitors with a larger range of customers."

Between the comprehensive CLEO, IQEC and PhAST technical conferences and the integrated exhibition, it looks like the OSA has achieved its goal of putting together a meeting with something for everyone.

This year's event is co-sponsored by the IEEE/LEOS and the APS.

Essential information When: 16-21 May 2004
Where: Moscone Center West, San Francisco, California, US

Technical conferences: 16-21 May
Exhibition: 18-20 May
Exhibition opening hours:
18 May 10.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m.
19 May 10.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m.
20 May 10.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m.

What's on: 16 May
• Seven short courses are available on topics including remote sensing, measuring ultrashort pulses and tissue optics.

What's on: 17 May
• CLEO technical conferences begin.
• IQEC technical conferences begin.
• 13 short courses are running.
• Joint CLEO/IQEC special symposia begin.
• Joint CLEO/IQEC special symposium on 50 years of quantum electronics runs from 6.00 p.m. to 8.30 p.m. A reception will be held from 6.00 p.m. to 6.30 p.m. This will be followed by presentations from speakers including Charles Townes, Nicholaas Bloembergen and Norman Ramsey.
• PhAST kicks off with a welcome reception from 6.30 p.m. to 7.30 p.m. Three keynote speakers will then cover the special symposia topics of biophotonics instrumentation, photonics in nanotechnology and commercialization in semiconductor photonics from 7.30 p.m. to 9.30 p.m. The winner of the PhAST Innovation Award will also be announced this evening.

What's on: 18 May
• Integrated CLEO/IQEC/PhAST exhibition opens its doors.
• CLEO and IQEC technical conferences continue.
• Joint CLEO/IQEC special symposia continue.
• CLEO and IQEC poster session (1) runs from 1.00 p.m. to 2.30 p.m.
• PhAST keynote presentations continue from 8.30 a.m. to 10.00 a.m. as speakers address lasers in manufacturing, and photonics in homeland and national security.
• PhAST technical sessions begin.
• 13 short courses are running.

What's on: 19 May
• Joint CLEO/IQEC plenary session runs from 8.00 a.m. to 10.45 a.m. This year's plenary speakers are Anthony Siegman, Thomas Baer and Theodor Hänsch.
• CLEO and IQEC technical conferences continue.
• Joint CLEO/IQEC special symposia continue.
• PhAST technical sessions continue.
• PhAST lunch with industry leaders runs from 12.30 p.m. to 2.00 p.m. Attendees can register to attend this luncheon event when registering for PhAST itself. Please note that there are a limited number of spaces and a separate registration fee is required.
• CLEO and IQEC poster session (2) runs from 1.00 p.m. to 2.30 p.m.
• PhAST Business Management Programme running from 5.00 p.m. to 7.30 p.m. This programme offers advice from venture capitalists and industry players involved in start-up companies. It also includes a panel-discussion session.

What's on: 20 May
• CLEO and IQEC technical conferences continue.
• Joint CLEO/IQEC special symposia finish.
• PhAST technical sessions draw to a close.
• Integrated CLEO/IQEC/PhAST exhibition ends.
• CLEO and IQEC poster session (3) runs from 1.00 p.m. to 2.30 p.m.
• CLEO post-deadline paper session runs from 8.00 p.m. to 10.00 p.m.

What's on: 21 May
• CLEO and IQEC technical conferences end.

Full CLEO/IQEC/PhAST conference programme: www.cleoconference.org/conference_program/

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