Shedding light on photonics

Yorkshire and Humber is showcasing the region’s talent in the emerging field of photonics in an event dubbed ‘Harnessing Light…the Future’s Bright, the Future’s Photonics’

Yorkshire and Humber is showcasing the region’s talent in the emerging field of photonics in ‘Harnessing Light…the Future’s Bright, the Future’s Photonics,’ an event hosted by SheffieldUniversity.

It will look at how an increasing number of key sectors in the region are making use of photonics in developing business products and processes that rely on the efficient processing of advanced materials, high precision manufacturing, and accurate measurement and monitoring.

The event run by the Yorkshire Science and Technology Network aims to demonstrate how photonics will affect key regional industries such as medical, automotive, aerospace, defence and manufacturing.

One of the speakers will be Prof Animesh Jha, of LeedsUniversity, who will introduce photonic technology.

‘The generation and manipulation of light is a key technology for the future,’ he said. ‘If the 20th century was the century where the electronics age emerged, then this coming century will be seen as the photonics age.’

Also speaking will be Dr Richard Hogg Sheffield University. He said: ‘Photonics is incredibly important to businesses across Yorkshire and Humber and we intend to explain why. Businesses should be interested as to how and why photonic technologies can benefit their processes and as a result their bottom line. We have leading academics within leading institutions here in Yorkshire and Humber, ready to collaborate with businesses and build on the success the industry has gained so far.’

Jim Farmery, head of innovation at RDA Yorkshire Forward said: ‘Photonics typically represents between five and 20 per cent of the cost of a product in business. As a £20bn market in the UK today, this is one of the most promising and exciting technology fields currently being developed.

‘We need to expand on the use of photonics from traditional applications such as data transmission and consumer equipment and make this work for our businesses and our economy going forward.’