From ultra-fast internet to medical applications, manufacturing to personal computers, the photonics technologies based on the control of light have profoundly transformed our society. We have been able to tame most of the properties of light to our benefit: the colour, power, the duration of pulses. Only recently we have found that one property, the optical angular momentum can help us to give an extra boost to the photonics technologies.
The discovery that light had the capacity to rotate material objects thus carrying an optical angular momentum, was made as early as the late 19th century. It has only been in the last decade that the field has fully matured. As our ability to control the Optical angular momentum has increased, a full range of applications have appeared. Applications such as high-speed fiber optic communications, high resolution microscopy, micro and nano-manipulation, detection of exo-planets and many more.
The workshop will run from 9am to 5pm on Friday, April 22.
Michael Berry, H H Wills Physics Laboratory, University of Bristol UK.
Sir Michael Victor Berry, FRS (born 14 March 1941), is a theoretical physicist who thinks in pictures and whose lectures are strongly visual.
He is known for his research in borderlands between theories: classical and quantum, rays and waves. His emphasis is on geometrical singularities such as ray caustics and wave vortices. Sir Michael discovered the geometric phase, a phase difference arising from cyclically changing conditions with applications throughout physics, including optics and condensed matter.
He delights in uncovering down-to-earth or dramatic and sometimes beautiful examples of abstract mathematical ideas: the arcane in the mundane. Examples are mathematical singularities in rainbows and the dancing lines at the bottom of swimming pools; the twists and turns of a belt that underlie the quantum behaviour of identical particles; a laser pointer shone through bathroom window glass to demonstrate abstract aspects of wave interference; and oriental magic mirrors illustrating the mathematical Laplace operator.
Sir Michael has received numerous awards, including the Maxwell Medal and the Dirac Medal of the Institute of Physics, the Royal Society's Royal Medal, the London Mathematical Society's Pólya Prize, the Wolf Prize and the Lorentz Medal. He is a member of several national academies, serves on scientific committees of various institutes and was knighted in 1996.
For more information on "Berry's Season" at Macquarie University, download the flyer.