October Science Events

The Role of Laser Technology in Science, Medicine and IT

October 7, 2013
St. Vincent’s Hall, Room 407
Alumni Speaker: Dr. Peter Milonni, ’69, University of Rochester, Los Alamos National Laboratory

In announcing an International Year of Light in 2015, UNESCO stated that, “Light is at the origin of all life, it plays a central role in human activities, and has revolutionized society through medicine and communications, entertainment and culture.” The first part of Dr. Milonni’s talk will describe some important milestones in laser technology, which has been by far the main driver in this progress. He will then focus attention, without equations or other technical details, on how lasers have revolutionized basic research in atomic physics, chemistry, environmental science, and astronomy.

After graduating summa cum laude from Niagara University in 1969 with a B.S. in physics, Dr. Milonni began graduate study at the University of Rochester, where he completed a Ph.D. in theoretical physics in 1974. He was a research physicist at the Air Force Weapons Laboratory (1974-77), a senior staff engineer at the Perkin-Elmer Corporation (1977-80), and a professor of physics at the University of Arkansas (1980-85) before becoming at staff member (1985-2005) and a laboratory fellow (1994-) in the Theoretical Division of the Los Alamos National Laboratory. He is currently a guest scientist at Los Alamos and a Research Professor of Physics at the University of Rochester.

Dr. Milonni’s primary research interests have been in quantum optics and electrodynamics, especially in connection with the quantum and fluctuation properties of electromagnetic radiation. In addition to many research papers, he has authored several books, including Lasers (1988, with J.H. Eberly); The Quantum Vacuum. An Introduction to Quantum Electrodynamics (1994); Fast Light, Slow Light, and Left-Handed Light (2005); and Laser Physics (2010, with J. H. Eberly). He has been a consultant for several corporations and a member of several advisory boards, including the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at the University of California at Santa Barbara. He has served on the editorial boards of Physical Review and the Journal of the Optical Society of America, is presently a divisional associate editor for Physical Review Letters, and is on the editorial boards of Progress in Optics, Contemporary Physics, and Advances in Optics and Photonics. He was awarded the 2008 Max Born Award by the Optical Society of America “for exceptional contributions to the fields of theoretical optics, laser physics and quantum mechanics, and for dissemination of scientific knowledge through authorship of a series of outstanding books.”

Notification of your planned attendance is appreciated, but not necessary. To do so, please contact Shana DiCamillo at 716.286.8297 or sdicamillo@niagara.edu.