How can we measure the ripeness of crops? How can we minimize the amount of materials used for products? How to measure the quality of air at a particular location? How can we diagnose diseases faster and cure them more effectively? Just a few examples of questions related to the grand societal challenges on circular economy, food supply and health care. Photonics plays an important role in addressing these challenges. For example, think of energy-saving LED-lighting, solar panels, fast communication over fiber network, laser surgery or the use of a wide variety of optical sensors.
The mission of the research group Photonics is to contribute to a healthy world and a sustainable economy by developing practical photonic applications. In parallel, the research group contributes to the education of professionals in the field of photonics, which is highly needed in order to realize the ambitions of the growing photonics sector.The photonics research of targets the application areas High-tech Industry, Agri & Food, Energy & Environment, Health and Mobility. Digital technology plays an important role in these application areas, in which photonics is widely used to acquire digital data. Spectroscopy, metrology and imaging are the key words characterizing the research. The application of optical sensors, like spectrometers or optical fiber-based sensors, will play a central role here. The motto of the Dutch physicist Heike Kamerlingh Onnes ‘through measurement to knowledge’, supplemented with ‘through knowledge to action’, will be the guiding principle of the Photonics research group.