Exactly 31 years ago today the General Conference of Weights And Measures adopted the value of 299,792.458 km/s for the speed of light. To mark that auspicious date, and decision, the world of photonics will today be joining together in celebration.
More than 100 special activities, mainly but not exclusively in the form of discussions and practical demonstrations, are taking place in 30 countries as a mark of respect to the importance and impact of photonics on all our everyday lives.
A huge variety of companies, research organisations and universities are taking part by conducting activities ranging from an informal after work discussion at a local restaurant, to school visits, to family days out, to laser drawing contests for local children.
In Switzerland for example CSEM will be hosting an open day; The University of Aveiro in Portugal is organizing an event involving lasers, holography, and other photonics applications; while INSERM in France has organized a meeting for surgeons, physicians, and biophysicists to present to them a specific device developed for Fluorescence guided resection.
For its part, Radiantis has organized a staff outing to the spectacular Casa Batlló, designed by Antonio Gaudi, whose inspiration for the building was said to come from natural organic forms. Most notably perhaps its front façade, which appears to change colour throughout the day depending on ambient light conditions.
The purpose of all these events is to promote Photonics and Key Enabling Technologies (KETs) within the different regions, MEPs and EC representatives, and other sectorial associations.