Role of Optics in Research Prospects and Pursuing Higher Education

Role of Optics in Research Prospects and Pursuing Higher Education

14th Jun, 2024

Optics is the branch of physics that studies the behaviour and properties of light, including its interactions with matter and the construction of instruments that use or detect it. Optics is all about light: how it’s generated, propagated, and detected. Optics usually describes the behaviour of visibleultraviolet, and infrared light. Light is a type of electromagnetic radiation, and other forms of electromagnetic radiation such as X-raysmicrowaves, and radio waves exhibit similar properties. It is a multidisciplinary endeavour with its roots in physics, electrical engineering, chemistry, and materials science. Now a day’s optics is part of everybody’s life. The ubiquity of visual systems in biology indicates the central role optics plays as the science of one of the five senses. Many people benefit from eyeglasses or contact lenses, and optics are integral to the functioning of many consumer goods including cameras. 

Optics is a part of Physics discipline has an exciting present and future ahead since the issues demanding attention in the research-oriented areas. How the optics and optics based devices play crucial role in our day to day life. Optical system or devices are faster than the traditional devices because in these devices the processes are based on speed of light. As per the statement given by a renowned Scientist Albert Einstein that nothing can move as velocity of light   and that is true. 

Every year on May 16, people around the world observe the International Day of Light. The day honours the date of physicist and engineer Theodore Maiman’s first productive laser operation in 1960. According to UNESCO “Without light, our planet would be but a cold and barren place. Indeed, where there is light, there is often an abundance of life. Yet light represents even more for humanity. Light goes hand in hand with knowledge; it is a lens through which to see and understand the world.”

Optical computing finds applications across various domains, such as parallel processing, high-speed signal processing, energy efficiency, quantum computing, machine learning, secure communication, and signal/image processing. The area in which optical computing is ahead of quantum is the speed at which (simpler) calculations can be performed. In some cases, optical computing is faster than quantum. In many cases, optical computing is being researched for use in tandem with quantum computers.

Optical component performances are essential for establishing Internet connectivity using optical communication systems. Implementations of the various functions the optical components perform require different materials in order to develop these components. Photonic integration technology such as silicon photonics technology provides high production efficiency and high integration. Future developments of all-optical networks will involve silicon photonic technology using graphene materials to achieve various optical switching, optical routing, optical logic, optical storage, and optical signal processing functions for the next generation. Furthermore, a new type of photonic component using photonic crystals and artificial materials will find applications in the near future. 5G mobile network services, which will drive the future optical industry development and architectural transformations, will also benefit from the high-speed development of future photonics components. Some of the services of future all-optical networks will also include the traditional metro and backbone enterprise services evolved into cloud line access and cloud backbone services, ultra-band width video services (HD 4K and 8K video, e.g., for the Olympic games as well as telemedicine applications for remote surgery), and 5G mobile network services, including the Internet of Things (IoT) and Internet of Vehicles.

Optical applications can be found in every aspect of our lives, from contact lenses to fibre-optics communication. The study of optics has led scientists to produce ground breaking inventions like the laser and the holograph.

Optics allows for a wide range of modern research topics.

  • Optical image processing
  • Optical and quantum information processing
  • Nano-optics and Photonics
  • Sub-picosecond lasers and phenomena
  • Nonlinear optical materials
  • Quantum nature of absorption and emission of light
  • Light propagation in microstructures
  • Quantum imaging
  • Slow and fast light propagation
  • Theory, design, and fabrication of lasers
  • Optimization of computer based optical system design
  • Hybrid electrical-optical computing
  • Remote sensing
  • Physics of super-intense fields
  • Diffractive optics
  • Medical optics
  • Fabrication of quantum-well devices
  • Nonlinear dynamics and chaos

Authored By

Dr Hukum Singh
Department of Applied Sciences
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