National Capital Section
of the Optical Society of America

Seventh 2015-2016 meeting of the
National Capital Section of the Optical Society of America

Friday, April 8th, 1:30 PM

Kim Building, University of Maryland, College Park, MD


A joint meeting with the:

·      UM OSA/SPIE Student Chapter

·      DC-Northern VA Chapter of the IEEE Photonics Society

·      Baltimore Chapter of the IEEE Photonics Society


Annual Poster Competition


The National Capital Section of the Optical Society is co-sponsoring a student poster competition at the University of Maryland. Undergraduate and graduate students will display posters of their current research and answer questions. Posters will be judged and cash prizes awarded  for first – second – and third place winners.


The event will begin with a featured talk by Dr. John Gillaspy, Program Director, NSF at 1:30PM .  Posters will be displayed in the atrium of the Kim Building after the lecture. There will be refreshments for attendees.


Friday, April 8, 2016

1:30 PM: Lecture in Room 1111, Jeong H. Kim Building by Dr. John Gillaspy, Program Director, NSF: “From Farm to The Foundation: A Personal Journey Through Optical Research”

3:00 PM: Poster Presentations in Atrium of Jeong H. Kim Building

5:30 PM: Reception with refreshments

7:00 PM: Announcement of winners

Jim Heany,

DIRECTIONS to the Kim Building, University of Maryland:

Take the Capital Beltway (Rt. 495) to Exit 25; College Park (Rt.1 South.)  Go about two and a half miles south and turn right at the entrance to the University of Maryland campus onto Campus Drive.  (From Route 1 coming from the South, turn LEFT onto Campus Drive.)  Once thorough the entrance, take your first right.  The Jeong H. Kim Building will be on your left just after crossing Stadium Drive.

After 4 PM, there is plenty of free parking, including lots XX1, XX2 and XX5.  Be careful NOT to park in an E, EE or T lot as they carry $75 fines for unauthorized use.  Check the parking signs to be sure you are in the right parking lot.  Pay parking is available in the Paint Branch Drive visitors’ pay parking lot ($3 per hour) on the left just beyond the Jeong H. Kim Building.

For a campus map see


This Annual Poster Competition will feature graduate level poster demonstrations and explanations by students from surrounding area universities: Univ. of Maryland, Univ. of MD Baltimore County, Johns Hopkins University and others. This is a competition at which cash prizes are awarded to first , second, and third place winners. Consequently, judges are needed to evaluate the posters and use a prepared scoring system to select the winners. Please contact Jim Heaney (301-286-9133; if you are available of Friday April 8th to help us to select the winners.

OUR NEXT MEETING -- Tuesday May 24, 2016 – The Annual Science Fair Student Awards Banquet and Ceremony, at the GSFC Recreation Center.   See the 2016 area science fairs winners in the categories of Optics and Photonics.

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Membership Dues for 2015-2016 - Dues for the National Capital Section are free during the first year of membership. After the first year, dues are $10 per year. If you have not yet paid, please send $10 ($5 for students) to the NCS/OSA secretary at the address given below. If you are not sure if you have paid, please call (301) 286-0690 or e-mail to check.



December 31, 2015 saw the closure of the U.N. Sponsored ‘International Year of Light’. Immediate entry into 2016 brought with it the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Optical Society and another reason for optical technologists to celebrate. As part of our celebration, OSA has created a Centennial Exhibit that highlights 100 iconic images representing OSA and the world of optics and photonics:


Another Optics Luminary celebrated during this Centennial Year of the Optical Society’s Founding:

Max Planck

Max Karl Ernst Ludwig Planck (April 1858 – October 1947) was a German theoretical physicist who initiated our quantum age. His famous equation that incorporated the concept of quantized energy to explain the behavior of blackbody radiation and resolved the “ultraviolet catastrophe” of earlier efforts won him the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1918. It appears that his study of blackbody radiation began as an attempt to understand and improve the performance of electric light bulbs. 

Planck’s personal life included many tragic losses of a wife and children, with a younger son killed in action during the battle of Verdun in the first World War and the oldest son later executed by the Nazi Regime for conspiring against Hitler. During his peak scientific years, he was twice president of the Kaiser Wilhelm Society, the German scientific institution that was more recently named the May Planck Society that includes 83 institutions embracing a wide range of science interests in Germany.



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