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Optics colloquium set for Thursday

Pietro Bernasconi, who has played a leading international role in developing devices needed for all-optical networks, will discuss his research on Thursday at a Special Optics Colloquium sponsored by the Center for Optical Technologies.

Bernasconi’s address, titled “IRIS: An Optical IP Router: Does it make sense?,” will begin at 4 p.m. in Room 316 of the Physics Building. The event is co-sponsored by the department of physics and the department of electrical and computer engineering.

Bernasconi will discuss the architectural and technical challenges posed by the implementation of an all-optical packet router, as well as solutions that are being developed by the IRIS project.

Routers are devices that forward data packets along networks. Scientists and engineers are seeking to develop all-optical networks, which, by eliminating the necessity of switching back and forth to electronic devices, can operate more quickly than optoelectronic networks.

The IRIS (Integrated Router Interconnected Spectrally) initiative, with which Bernasconi is involved, is sponsored by DARPA, the government agency that commissions advanced research for the U.S. Department of Defense.

Bernasconi, who received his Ph.D. in physics from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology of Zurich in 1998, joined Bell Labs at Lucent Technologies in 1999. At Bell, he has worked on integrated lightwave circuits on passive silicon-dioxide-based substrates and on active indium-phosphide-based (IP) materials.

The Center for Optical Technologies has scheduled two additional Special Optics Colloquia this semester. On Thursday, Oct. 27, George Stegeman of the University of Central Florida will speak on “Linear and Nonlinear Discrete Optics.” On Thursday, Nov. 17, Alexander Gaeta of Cornell University will discuss “Nonlinear Optics in Photonic Crystal Fibers.”

Both of those events are scheduled for 4 p.m. in Room 316 of the Physics Building.

Posted on Wednesday, October 12, 2005

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