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SPIE Leaders Seek Support for a National Photonics Initiative
Date:12/27/2012

BELLINGHAM, Washington, USA (PRWEB) December 27, 2012

A National Photonics Initiative (NPI) will foster increased collaboration and coordination between industry, government, and academia to identify and advance areas of photonics that are critical for maintaining U.S. competitiveness and national security, SPIE representatives are telling industry and research groups around the country.

The NPI is a key recommendation in the report “Optics and Photonics, Essential Technologies for Our Nation” released in August by the National Academies. Speakers from SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, are part of an ad hoc intersociety committee which has been working for the establishment of the NPI since the report was released.

Their talks illustrate how the NPI would help strengthen the economy, create jobs, protect U.S. competitiveness in the global market, and enable new solutions for challenges in healthcare, sustainable energy, manufacturing, defense and community security, and communications.

“We carefully chose the title for this report: optics and photonics really are essential technologies,” said Paul McManamon, SPIE Past President and Technology Director of the Laser and Optical Communication Institute at the University of Dayton. McManamon and SPIE Fellow Alan Willner (University of Southern California) co-chaired the National Research Council (NRC) committee who researched and authored the report.

“Photonics is a critical enabler for our high-tech economy. The Internet, MRIs and CAT scans, and space mission spin-offs such as optical blood diagnostic instruments and infrared cameras that indicate hot spots in a
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