Preview: SPIE Photonics West 2020

Photonics West greeted its attendants with a giant video wall in 2019 (Source:

The largest technical conference covering the latest developments in applications of optics and photonics will welcome an estimated 23,000 registered attendees to San Francisco’s Moscone Center, hosting more than 1400 exhibitors, and sharing more than 5000 academic and technical papers.

Photonics West 2020 will showcase the latest in applications, technologies, and discoveries in optics and photonics, with three major conference tracks: BiOS, highlighting new research in biophotonics, biomedical optics, and applications of medical imaging; Lase, with its focus on the laser industry and applications; and Opto, showcasing optoelectronics, photonic materials, and related devices.

From the SPIE BiOS Hot Topics speakers during Photonics West’s opening weekend, to the SPIE Prism Awards and 10th annual SPIE Startup Challenge later in the week, the symposium will highlight innovative technologies and industry developments across the optics spectrum. Nobel laureate Eric Betzig will give a plenary; other plenaries will cover next-generation data centers, quantum computing, as well as other trending applications of photonics.

Featuring hundreds of product launches, live demonstrations, and technologies on display, the BiOS Expo and Photonics West Exhibition are both free and open to the public: the 200-exhibitor strong BiOS Expo – featuring the latest technology in biomedical optics and healthcare applications – is open 1 – 2 February. The Photonics West Exhibition, 4 – 6 February, showcases the latest in optics and photonics innovations from more than thirty countries.

In addition, 2020 marks the inaugural SPIE AR/VR/MR conference. The three-day conference incorporates an academic track, including the Student Optical Design Challenge; a two-day Expo + Demos event at which attendees will experience the entire ecosystem of the hardware; a selection of courses covering the technologies and industry expectations; two days of more than forty industry leaders sharing trends and insights; and end-of-day networking receptions. All attendees with full conference registration have access to the SPIE AR/VR/MR conference.

“Each year, Photonics West, as the first global photonics event of the year, sets the tone for academic, industry, and government communities,” notes event manager Marilyn Gorsuch, SPIE senior director of technical programs and proceedings. “With a Nobel laureate giving a plenary talk, our BiOS Hot Topics speakers covering a comprehensive range of exciting topics on the latest biomedical innovations, our new, AR/VR/MR co-located conference making its debut, and with an ambitious and value-driven industry-focused program, Photonics West 2020 promises to be an engaging, thought-provoking, must-attend gathering.”

In addition to the conferences and exhibitions, Photonics West also hosts the SPIE Career Summit, with its various professional-development sessions and networking opportunities; 65 courses covering such topics as Medical Laser-Tissue Interactions and Optical Measurements for Automotive Displays & Lighting; and a comprehensive job fair, 4 – 5 February. (Source: SPIE)

Link: SPIE Photonics West, San Francisco, SPIE – international society for optics and photonics, Bellingham, Wash., USA

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