Archive for the ‘Astronomy’ category

Arizona’s Optics Valley Hosting Event Prior to Photonics West

November 21, 2017

ARIZONA PHOTONICS DAYS – 24/27 January 2018 – Tucson, Arizona Presented by Optics Valley in partnership with UA Tech Parks and the Global Photonics Alliance.

Join us as the Optics Valley Committee of the Arizona Technology Council hosts our Global Photonics Alliance partners for two days of technical discussions and business-to-business meetings:

  • Connect and Network with your global peers in the quiet intimate environment of Tucson, Arizona.
  • Learn about the amazing optics technology form Optics Valley companies and the University of Arizona College of Optical Sciences as well as that from our Global Alliance attendees.
  • Discuss global optics issues with the ability to formulate coordinated positions and ideas.Conference Chairman: Jack Schumann

Conference Fee:  $200.00 – covering participation, materials, welcome reception, meals, local group transportation

Conference Hotel: Courtyard by Marriott Williams Centre 201 S Williams Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85711

>Learn More & Register for Arizona Photonics Days<<


Rochester Continues Celebrating the International Year of Light

July 21, 2015

In the International Year of Light it has become obvious…

Rochester needs an annual event to celebrate light.

The hub for Rochester’s celebration of light is naturally the Rochester Museum & Science Center.  The RMSC is the obvious choice for the Rochester International Center of Light, Multimedia and Astronomy.

Laser, holographic, multimedia light shows and live gaming, together with music and dance performance will draw international audiences to our city.  The New York Photonics board has resolved to support this idea with the Finger Lakes Regional Council through an RMSC funding application.

In 2014 NYPhotonics began working on (or instigating) a number of projects for the International Year of Light in Rochester.  A broad view looks like this:IYOLRMSC

  • Rochester Museum & Science Center IYOL2015 Advisory Committee
  • OPI Company Tours in May 2015
  • Illuminations, a permanent exhibition of interactive OPI science demonstrations previewing now in the Patricia Hale Gallery at RMSC
  • Cubes: A Visual Exploration of Possibility at the Rochester Contemporary
  • A Street Light Festival (July 17 & 18)
  • …of Light” a commissioned piece of music for Jazz Ensemble by Dave Rivello, Assistant Professor of Jazz and Contemporary Media, Eastman School of Music.  This piece will debut during two performances in Kilbourn Hall during the First Niagara Fringe Festival on Friday, September 18th.

We have a unique opportunity to showcase New York Photonics during the International Year of Light, and your sponsorship of  the Illuminations exhibit at the RMSC and the music debut during Fringe Festival are needed! Here is more detail on what the sponsorship opportunities look like:

1) Illuminations

First, a caveat:  The Rochester Museum and Science Center does not need our money to fund this exhibition. The exhibits were conceived and built by RMSC staff and the RMSC Technical Assistance Group (TAG) as part of the RMSC’s celebration of the International Year of Light. Previewing now in the Patricia Hale gallery at the RMSC, the Illuminations exhibition will become a permanent installation within RMSC later this year in a renovated space on the 2nd floor of the Museum.

In February, honoring the International Year of Light, the RRPC board of directors passed a resolution to adopt the RMSC Strasenburgh Planetarium as an international center for astronomy, multimedia and interdisciplinary arts and sciences.

We can think of no better gesture to begin this new focus on the RMSC than sponsoring the Illuminations exhibit.  With more than 375,000 visitors per year to the RMSC, sponsorship offers great exposure for NYPhotonics and its membership companies:

  • Each exhibit is an entertaining and educational experiment in physics and light
  • Your company name, logo and profile will accompany each exhibit, and where possible, associate your business with the specific photonic experiment.
  • This PERMANENT exhibition will be sponsored by NYPhotonics and its members, with specific companies sponsoring each individual exhibit

Youtube Video Here Take a close  look at the exhibitions here

2) “…. And Light” A World Premiere Celebrating the International Year of Light presented at the First Niagara Rochester Fringe Festival

We are seeking 3 contributions of $5,000 each to support this world premier.  The music has already been commissioned. What will you get for your contribution?

  • Verbal and printed recognition at the performances
  • Credited sponsorship for specific composition movements (it is in six parts)
  • VIP seating for the performances (your choice early and/or late)
  • Meet and Greet with artists, composer and musicians the night of the performance
  • A signed and framed copy of the frontispiece of sheet music from the composition, thanking you for your support of the International Year of Light
  • Exclusive CD of the performance from Eastman School of Music
  • CDs of recent ESM Jazz Department releases
  • Acknowledgement in a joint press release issued by the Eastman School of Music and NYPhotonics, the promotional name for RRPC across the globe.

Read more detail about the music, the composer and the event, here.

Call Tom Battley to secure your sponsorship or answer any questions.  585.329.4029

Pluto Images? Optimax Optics On-Board

July 10, 2015

Optimax Optics On-Board the Pluto New Horizons Satellite

The first mission to the dwarf planet Pluto and outer edge of our solar system to arrive on July 14th after a nine-year journey

The Pluto New Horizons mission is expected to provide the first close-up photos and measurements of the dwarf planet at 7:50 a.m. ET on July 14th with Optimax lenses on-board to provide some of the first high-resolution images of the mysterious planet.

“Our objective is to leverage our optics manufacturing expertise for programs that benefit mankind and have fun doing it,” said Rick Plympton, CEO, Optimax Systems, Inc. “New Horizons is just one more example of our lenses enabling humankind to view some of the most amazing things in the universe for the first time.”

NASA’s New Horizons mission was launched in 2006 and has already traveled 3.5 billion miles, swinging past Jupiter and will conduct a five-month-long flyby study of Pluto and its moons before venturing deeper into the Kuiper Belt at the edges of our solar system. The images and data provided by New Horizons will help us find out what the atmosphere and surface of Pluto looks like.

Optimax optics are on-board the LORRI (Long Range Reconnaissance Imager) telescopic camera which will obtain data at long distances and map Pluto’s far side and provide high resolution geologic data.

Optimax is a high-precision optics manufacturer located in Ontario, NY that builds the optics behind the latest breakthrough technologies in aerospace, medical, and consumer electronics. For small volume, highly quality optics, Optimax is set up to manufacture, test and deliver with speed and performance.

For more information on New Horizons: NASA New Horizons Fact Sheet


Image #1 – Artist’s concept of the New Horizons spacecraft as it approaches Pluto and its largest moon, Charon, in July 2015. (courtesy of


Image #2 – New Horizons rendition of spacecraft and instruments (Credits: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute)

Bent Light Playing Supernova Astronomical Reruns?

March 6, 2015

Astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope say they have been watching the same star blow itself to smithereens in a supernova explosion over and over again, thanks to a trick of Einsteinian optics.

The star exploded more than nine billion years ago on the other side of the universe, too far for even the Hubble to see without special help from the cosmos. In this case, however, light rays from the star have been bent and magnified by the gravity of an intervening cluster of galaxies so that multiple images of it appear.

Four of them are arranged in a tight formation known as an Einstein Cross surrounding one of the galaxies in the cluster. Since each light ray follows a different path from the star to here, each image in the cross represents a slightly different moment in the supernova explosion.

This is the first time astronomers have been able to see the same explosion over and over again, and its unique properties may help them better understand not only the nature of these spectacular phenomena but also cosmological mysteries like dark matter and how fast the universe is expanding.



Navitar Sponsors “Wonders of Orion” Polarizing Slides

March 4, 2015

In celebration of the International Year of Light (#IYOL15, #ROCtheIYOL), NYPhotonics member Navitar sponsored the donation of 2500 polarizing slides for the upcoming “Wonders of Orion” planetarium show at the Rochester Museum and Science Center’s Strasenburgh Planetarium.   Navitar, Inc. supplies custom projection optics for planetariums around the world.

As part of the International Year of Light, the Strasenburgh Planetarium has chosen “the polarizing effect” and The Crab Nebula.Navitar-Logo

In the late 1940’s and early 1950’s, astronomers noticed that light from the Crab Nebula is polarized. For example, Walter Baade photographed it with a polarizer in various orientations using the then-new 200-inch Palomar telescope. Polarization (among other things) indicates that something strange is going on in the Crab Nebula. The planetarium has the pictures. With your help they will show their audiences.

The pictures don’t mean much unless you have personally had the experience of watching something change as you look through a rotating polarizer. To make the point complete for the planetarium visitors, we wanted them to observe the polarizing effect through a rotating polarizer after the “Wonders of Orion” show.

Navitar President, Julian Goldstein comments, “We are pleased to help sponsor this exciting new show at the Strasenburgh Planetarium and celebrate the International Year of Light within the Greater Rochester community.”

 The show will run for about 27 performances over three months.


For over forty years, Navitar has been a leading producer of standard and custom engineered optics, opto-mechanical sub-assemblies and opto-electronic technologies and systems. Supporting the Biomedical & Life Sciences, Defense & Security, Industrial Imaging, and Projection markets worldwide, Navitar products are used in a variety of applications ranging from live cell imaging and flat panel inspection to flight simulation and digital signage.