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Keynote Lectures

Giancarlo C. Righini, Enrico Fermi Centre & IFAC CNR, Italy
          Title: Light-matter Interactions in Whispering-gallery-mode Microresonators

Andrea Cusano, University of Sannio, Italy
          Title: Microgel Photonics - A New Avenue for Multiresponsive Optical Fiber Nanoprobes

Manuel Filipe Costa, Universidade do Minho, Portugal
          Title: Surface Dimensional Metrology by Optical Triangulation



Light-matter Interactions in Whispering-gallery-mode Microresonators

Giancarlo C. Righini
Enrico Fermi Centre & IFAC CNR

Brief Bio

Physicist, he studied at the University of Florence and made his first approach to the research in optics in the group led by Giuliano Toraldo di Francia. After three years of fellowships at the University of Florence, in 1972 he got a permanent position at National Research Council of Italy (CNR). Since then, he has worked almost 40 years at CNR, in Florence and Rome. Among various duties, he was director  of CNR National Group of Quantum Electronics and Plasma Physics (1983-1996), research director at IFAC - Nello Carrara Institute of Applied Physics (1991-2010), head of IFAC Optoelectronics and Photonics Department (1999 - 2005), director  of CNR National Department of Materials and Devices (2006-2009). Since February 2012 he is director of the Enrico Fermi Center in Rome, and holds a position of associate scientist at IFAC. He always did experimental research, first in optical holography and optical signal processing, and then in fiber and integrated optics, with particular attention to glass materials. His more recent interests concern optical microresonators and nanostructured materials. His publication record includes more than 500 papers, most of them in relevant international journals. According to ISI – Web of Science database, the statistics for the period January 2000 to January 2015 show 286 publications, 2077 cites, and h-index: 26. He has been member of the Editorial Board of several international journals, including Applied Optics, New Journal of Glass and Ceramics, Optical Materials, Optoelectronics Letters, Photonics Letters of Poland, Advances in Optical Technology. He was author of several book chapters and co-editor of the book Introduction to Optoelectronic Sensors, published by World Scientific in January 2009.  He has also taught for many years, as contract professor, at the University of Florence and at AILUN, in Sardinia. He has tutored more than 20 MSc and PhD students in Italy and has been member of several PhD juries in Europe.
He has been PI in several national and international projects in the fields of optics and photonics. He is often asked to review research projects dealing with optics and photonics for public research agencies in Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Italy and Spain. He was appointed Vice-President of IUPAP (International Union of Pure and Applied Physics). As a service to optical community, he has been co-founder and then President of the Italian Society of Optics and Photonics (SIOF); Vice-President of ICO (International Commission for Optics); Secretary of EOS (European Optical Society); member of the Board of Directors of SPIE. Currently is in the Board of EOS and is chairman of Technical Committee TC-20 (Glasses for Optoelectronics) of the International Commission on Glass.

Whispering Gallery Mode (WGM) microresonators have attracted a lot of interest in the last decades, due to their extraordinary high quality factors and the small volume modes. These properties make them particularly suitable for shaping and enhancing light-matter interactions, for both fundamental physics and engineering applications. Important results have been achieved in areas which range from lasing to nonlinear optics, to optical communications and to optical sensing. A number of experiments have concerned integrated optical microresonators in the form of ring cavities and of 3D microresonators in disk or toroid format. Among all the geometries, however, microspheres are the simplest three-dimensional WGM resonators: they typically are ten to a hundred micrometers in diameter, very often easily fabricated in silica glass by simply melting the tip of an optical fiber.
In the present lecture an overview of the recent advances in the applications of microspherical resonators, both in bulk and bubble format, will be presented, with special focus on biophotonic sensing.



Microgel Photonics - A New Avenue for Multiresponsive Optical Fiber Nanoprobes

Andrea Cusano
University of Sannio

Brief Bio
Andrea Cusano received Laurea degree cum Laude in Electronic and Telecommunication Engineering and the Ph.D in Optoelectronics from University of Naples (Federico II, Italy). He is currently Associate Professor at the Engineering Department of University of Sannio where he and Prof. Cutolo co-founded the Optoelectronic Group since 2002. He has published over 120 journal articles and 150 refereed conference communications related to the development of new fiber optic and photonic sensors for physical, chemical and biological sensing applications. In this context, he has also co-authored more than 10 chapters published in international books and invited papers in international journals and is co-editor of 2 Special Issues: Special Issue on Optical Fiber Sensors (IEEE Sensors) 2008 Special Issue on “Fiber Optic Chemical and Biochemical Sensors: Perspectives and Challenges approaching the Nano-Era” (Current Analytical Chemistry, Bentham ) 2008. He is Co-Editor of  4 international books - ‘Fiber Bragg Grating Sensors: Recent Advancements, Industrial Applications and Market Exploitation’ Bnetham (2010), ‘Selected topics on Photonic crystals and Metamaterials’ World Scientific (2011), ‘Photonic Bandgap Structures: Technological Platforms for Physical Chemical and Biological Sensing’, (Bentham Science Publishers) (2012), ‘Optogemical Nanosensors’ (Taylor and Francis, 2012).  He currently has 4 international patents with major industrial companies (Ansaldo STS, Alenia WASS, Optosmart and MdTEch) and more than 10 national patents. He actually serves as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Optics and Laser Technology (Elsevier) and as Associate Editor for the Journal of Sensors (Hindawi Publishers), The Open Optics Journal (Bentham Science Publishers), The Open Environmental & Biological Monitoring Journal (Bentham Science Publishers), Sensors and Transducers Journal (IFSA), International Journal on Smart Sensing and Intelligent Systems, Photonic Sensors (Springer Verlag). He is a member of the technical committee of several international conferences such as IEEE Sensors, ICST, EWSHM, EWOFS. Prof. Cusano is cofounder of two spin-off companies “OptoSmart S.r.l.” (2005) and “Optoadvance” (2011) and has been consultant for major companies of the Finmeccanica group such as Ansaldo STS and Alenia WASS. He has also collaborations with CERN in Geneva where he is working on the development of innovative sensors for high energy physics applications. He received many international recognitions and awards for efforts in the development of innovative optical sensing systems and has been Principal Investigator of many national and international projects.

The “Lab-on-Fiber” technology is an emerging research field which basically envisages the integration of functionalized materials and devices at micro- and nano-scale (i.e. the ‘labs’) with optical fibers, aimed to develop a novel generation of advanced “all-in-fiber” miniaturized probes, exploitable in many strategic sectors ranging from optical processing to environmental monitoring, life science, safety and security. The key concept is to transform an inert optical fiber into a multifunctional sensor where ultra compact labs are developed and ‘shrinked’ into a single optical fiber, thus destructively enlarging the conventional optical fiber sensors functionalities. Fusing the world of highly functionalized materials at nano- and microscale within a single optical fiber is providing the implementation of miniaturized and advanced “all-in-fiber” technological platforms as sophisticate multifunction sensing and actuating systems. At the same time, Microgels (MGs) are increasingly receiving attention by the photonics community as direct sensing materials for environmentally responsive systems. MGs are colloidal stable hydrogel particles that can be functionalized to respond to changes in temperature, pH, ionic strength, metal ions, antigens, and the presence of a number of biomolecules. Integration of smart responsive microgel with optical fiber is now opening a new route to the ”microgel photonics” technology focused on the development of novel advanced and multiresponsive optical probes with enhanced functionalities, especially exploitable for biosensing applications.
The talk will address perspectives and challenges of this promising technological vision which can be in turn considered as a new relevant milestone in the Lab on Fiber Technology roadmap. 



Surface Dimensional Metrology by Optical Triangulation

Manuel Filipe Costa
Universidade do Minho

Brief Bio

Manuel F. M. Costa hold a PhD degree in Science (Physics) from the University of Minho (Portugal) were he works since 1985 at its Physics Department teaching and performing applied research in optical dimensional metrology, image processing, fiber optics, optometry, optical and optometric instrumentation, and on physics science and technology education and scientific literacy. Presented over three hundred invited, oral or poster communications in international meetings and published around the same number of scientific papers, monographs and books. He is editor or member of the editorial board of several scientific and educational international journals. He organised and acted as chairperson on eighteen international conferences and on over forty summer schools and workshops as well as European teacher training courses. Supervised nearly thirty master and PhD students in varied fields ranging from optical dimensional metrology and biomedical diagnosis to solgel and nanoparticles production and characterization or physics and science and technology teaching and learning. He organised and delivered countless outreach activities in different countries. He is member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the European Optical Society, member of the Board of the Iberoamerican Optics Network, RIAO, and member of the Board of Stakeholders of PHOTONICS’21. He act as president of the Hands-on Science Network, of the Portuguese Territorial Committee of the International Commission for Optics and of the Portuguese Society for Optics and Photonics, SPOF. He is Senior member of the International Society for Optics and Photonics, SPIE, and Fellow of European Optical Society, EOS.

Non-destructive dimensional inspection of surfaces is an issue of utmost importance in a large number of situation in R&D and in the industrial world. An increasing number of surfaces and surface types must be microtopographically characterized in non-invasive ways. Optical triangulation in different approaches allow the establishment of metrological systems that by its inherent relative simplicity versatility robustness and reliability can cope with most modern requirements of the non-invasive inspection of objects and surfaces both smooth or rough. In this communication we will present a brief review of the work done at the Microtopography Laboratory of the Physics Department of the University of Minho, Portugal, on the development of methods and systems of optical triangulation based microtopographic inspection of surfaces.