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ICO Newsletter

 July 2014 Number 100



2014 ICO Bureau member elections  

Interim report of the Nominating Committee 2014 ICO Bureau elections


According to established procedures in the ICO Rules and Codes of Practice,elections for members of the ICO Bureau take place every three
years and will take place this yearat the ICO-23 Congress, “Enlightening
the future”,to be held 26–29 August in Santiago de Compostela, Spain.

The procedures and protocols for the election are as described in the ICO Rules and Codes of Practice. For the upcoming elections the Nominating Committee consists of Maria L. Calvo (Spain, Chair), Anna Consortini (Italy), René Dändliker (Switzerland), Ari T Friberg (Finland), Asher Friesem (Israel), Ajoy Ghatak (India), Min Gu (Australia) and Kyoung Yoon Kim (South Korea).

According to ICO rules, letters were sent to the Territorial Committees (TCs) in October 2012 and November 2013 for nominations to be received by 15 March 2014. As of 26 May, the nominations shown in the table below have been received and/or established by protocol.

The position of past-president for the term 2014–2017 will be automatically assumed by the current President, Duncan
T Moore (USA).

Added to these in the Bureau composition will be individuals appointed as Vice-president by the Member societies. However, it should be remembered that nominations for all positions/officers close 24 hours before the second business meeting of the International Commission for Optics General Assembly in Santiago de Compostela.

The election activities will take place as indicated during the ICO General Assembly – the first session is scheduled for 5:00–7:00 p.m. on 26 August, while the second and final ICO General Assembly is scheduled for 4:30–7:30 p.m. on 28 August. Additionally, the Nominating Committee will now be collecting candidates’ CVs and endorsements of candidates from the Territorial Committees.


Position Nomination Territorial committee
President Prof. Yasuhiko Arakawa Japan
Secretary Prof. Angela M Guzmán Colombia
Associate secretary Prof. Gert von Bally Germany
Treasurer Prof. James A Harrington USA
Vice-president Prof. Manuel F Costa Portugal
  Prof. Qihuang Gong China
those in industry are Prof. John Harvey New Zealand
marked with an * Prof. Joseph Niemela USA
  Prof. Seung-Han Park South Korea
  Dr. Haim Russo* Israel
  Prof. Alexei Taichenachev Russia
  Prof. Jakub Zakrzewski Poland
  Prof. Mourad Zghal Tunisia
Present vice-presidents Dr. Franz Höller* Germany
eligible for a second term Prof. Humberto Michinel Spain
  Prof. Roberta Ramponi Italy


The ICO 23rd General Congress held in Spain

The world of optics and photonics to meet in Santiago de Compostela this coming August.

ICO-23, the 23rd General Congress of the International Commission for Optics (ICO), will be celebrated in the beautiful city of Santiago de Compostela (Spain), 26–29 August. This year, the theme of the Congress is “Enlightening the Future” and its wide-ranging technical program will try to capture the majority of aspects of modern optics and photonics, from quantum and nonlinear optics to bio-medical applications of light, or from optical telecommunications to optical metrology, also including emerging and fascinating fields such as optomechanics or nanophotonics, among others.

This congress hosts the ICO’s triennial General Assembly, and the main goal of the meeting is to report on the latest advances and innovations in optics and related areas. Therefore, a wide and exciting variety of lectures will be presented by some of the most prestigious researchers in the world of optics, like Alain Aspect from Alain Aspect from the Institut d'Optique, Palaiseau, France. in France, Phillip Russell from the Max-Planck Institute for the Science of Light in Germany, and Margaret Murnane from JILA in the US, among many other speakers. More than 200 talks will be distributed among nine parallel sessions that will take place during the four days of the meeting.

As traditional in every ICO meeting, special attention has been paid to promoting participation of scientists coming from developing regions, with special emphasis on attracting students and women, which represent the future of optics in many emerging regions. With the generous sponsorship of several international organizations, ICO-23 will include new participants coming from countries that have never before been represented in previous ICO General Congresses, reflecting the huge interest and growth of optics all over the world.

A three-day exhibition will also be held, where leading optics/photonics companies will display and demonstrate their latest equipment and new developments, making ICO-23 a great connection platform between cutting-edge research and entrepreneurship.

In keeping with the tradition of ICO Congresses, a large program of social events based around Santiago de Compostela and its beautiful world-heritage old city will be arranged. The charming atmosphere of a pilgrimage destination for centuries will be the perfect setting for the most international meeting on optics around the world, which will gather scientists from 50 different countries. In fact, the meeting will take place in the Faculty of Medicine, an impressive classic building in the very heart of the old city of Santiago, only 50 m from the cathedral and the monumental Obradoiro square.

Experts in optics from all over the world will be welcomed to Santiago to debate and exchange information about how light-based technologies provide solutions to global challenges in science, technology, energy, health and education, and promote sustainable development, especially taking into account that next year, 2015, has been declared “International Year of Light and Light-Based Technologies” by the United Nations.

Professor Humberto Michinel, University of Vigo, Spain, Chair of ICO 23  



Bureau recommends amendment to Article 1 of ICO Statutes 

The ICO Bureau recommends to add the world "photonics"


The ICO Bureau recommends to the ICO General Assembly an amendment of Article 1 of the ICO Statutes in order to include the word Photonics, as follows: “The objective of the International Commission for Optics (ICO) is to contribute, on an international basis, to the progress of the science of optics and photonics and their applications. It emphasizes the unity of the cross-disciplinary field of optics.

“Optics and photonics are defined as fields of science and engineering encompassing the physical phenomena and technologies associated with the generation, transmission, manipulation, detection, and utilization of light. It extends on both sides of the visible part of the electromagnetic spectrum as far as the same concepts apply.

“In particular, the ICO promotes international co-operation and facilitates the rapid exchange of information, by encouraging and furthering the organization, on an international basis, of scientific meetings and summer schools. It emphasizes actions for the education and training in optics and photonics internationally. It undertakes special actions for the development of optics and photonics in regions where particular support is needed. It strives to improve the recognition of optics and photonics as fields of science with a significant impact on economy. It works also for the promotion of international agreements on nomenclature, units, symbols and standards.” 



ICO/ICTP/MCTP College on Optics and Energy

The ICO/ICTP initative for Central America continued with a College on Optics and Energy held at the Mesoamerican Centre for Theoretical Physics(MCTP).



The 21st century is the century of photonics and of the revolution triggered by renewable energy resources. Sustainable technologies and devices for energy production involve fundamental aspects of physics such as interaction of matter with radiation, optics and optical devices for diagnostics, physical properties of materials in the optical band, the physics of semiconductors and new photo materials. The search for improvement of the efficiency of solar energy systems also involves research in new areas such as silicon photonics, new structures for the harvesting of light, and the design and fabrication of optical elements with high optical performances, such as photovoltaic concentrators.

The College on Optics and Energy was held at the Mesoamerican Centre for Theoretical Physics (MCTP) in Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas, Mexico, from 28 April to 9 May, and was organized by the ICTP in collaboration with the ICO, the MCTP, and the Iberian American Network on Optics (RIAO). The college was intended to provide researchers from developing nations, and in particular Latin America and the Caribbean, with a scientific understanding of photovoltaic systems, recent scientific achievements in nanotechnology for the enhancement of the efficiency of solar cells, and global tendencies towards efficient energy consumption and the implementation of smart grids.

College directors were María L Calvo, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain; Angela M Guzmán, CREOL, University of Central Florida, USA; Arnulfo Zepeda, Director of MCTP, Chiapas, Mexico; and Joseph Niemela, ICTP, Italy. The local organizing Committee was presided by Elder de la Rosa, director of the CIO (Centro de Investigaciones en Optica), León, Guanajuato. Mexico, and worldwide expert on material science, who contributed with his expertise and strong academic and financial support to the event, facilitating the participation of CIO lecturers Oracio Barbosa, and Eric Rosas.

Other lectures were given by Juan Carlos Miñano, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Spain; Elena Golinelli, RSE, Italy; Rajesh Menon, University of Utah Laboratory for Nanotechnologies; USA; Rafael Guzmán, Universidad de Guanajuato, Mexico; Arturo Fernández Madrigal, UNAM, Mexico; Arturo Morales-Acevedo, I.P.N. Mexico; Iván Moreno, Universidad Autónoma de Zacatecas, Mexico; Omar A Ormachea, Universidad Privada Boliviana, Bolivia; and Alberto Varela, St Thomas University, USA. The ICO thanks all of them for their enthusiastic interaction with the select group of students (2 from Colombia, 1 from Cuba, 5 from El Salvador, 1 from Guatemala, 1 from Honduras, 18 from Mexico and 1 from Venezuela), who showed great enthusiasm and interest throughout the event. The ICO also thanks Roberto Ortega from the CCADET, UNAM, for advertising the event and lending equipment for the workshops.



Students had the opportunity to attend lectures ranging from the fundamentals of photovoltaics, including organic solar cells and solar energy storage, to novel photovoltaic materials and light harvesting structures. optical design and novel technologies for high-performance solar concentrators, solid-state lighting, power-generation diagnostics with optical spectroscopic techniques and practical examples of optimization of energy portfolios and installation of insular solar-energy systems.

Hands-on activities for measuring the local solar spectrum, characterization of solar cells and energy-saving sources for lighting were developed especially for the event and are expected to be the seed for an ALOP module on Optics and Energy. Presentations and videos of lectures and other activities are available at the MCTP webpage 



 SPIE and ALOP goes to Ethiopia 

Addendum by the ICO Newsletter Editor 


The ICO Newsletter Editor-in-Chief wants to add to the article “ALOP goes to Ethiopia”, published in the ICO Newsletter, issue 99, April 2014, that the UNESCO Workshop “Active Learning in Optics and Photonics” has had the financial support of SPIE since its inception, and that it continues being supported mainly by SPIE and by UNESCO, the latter through the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP). The core group of ALOP and its UNESCO leader Minella Alarcon received in 2012 the SPIE Teacher’s Award. SPIE was inadvertently not given well-deserved credit for its support in the original article. 



ICO and the International Year of Light 2015

ICO to highlight distinguished scientists on the web in the International Year of Light 

The ICO calls on all of its 53 Territorial Committees for contributions to a series on the life of distinguished scientists devoted to the Science of Light in their respective countries. The objective is to publish on the ICO website an article per week next year calling attention to the life work of scientists in ICO Territories, including Associate Territories. We would like to include short videos if available.

In order to inform the public, in their own language, of activities taking place in French-, Spanish-, and Portuguese-speaking countries, the ICO has purchased the domains and These will be linked to the main IYL web page and to the web pages of universities, academies, and other organizations that wish to bring worldwide attention to their activities in their own language and to provide information to the ICO Secretariat.

ICO will be partnering with the Regional Office of ICSU for Latin America and the Caribbean in organizing activities in that region. 



International Commission for Optics

Bureau members (2011-2014):

President: D. T. Moore;

Past-President: M L CalvoTreasurer: J A Harrington;

Secretary: A M Guzmán, CREOL, The College of Optics and Photonics, University of Central Florida, PO Box 162700, 4000 Central Florida Blvd,Orlando, FL 32816-2700, USA; e-mail

Associate Secretary: G von Bally

Vice-Presidents, elected: Y Arakawa, Z Bingkun, F Höller, Z Ben Lakhdar, H Michinel, M Oron, R Ramponi, T Szoplik

Vice-Presidents, appointed: U J Gibson, M J Yzuel, Y Ding, H P Herzig, A Diaspro, A Wagué

IUPAP Council Representative: C Cisneros

Editor in chief: A M Guzmán

Editorial committee:
K Baldwin, Australian National University, Australia;
J Dudley, Université de Franche-Comté, France;
William T Rhodes, Florida Atlantic University, USA