PhD viva success!

Congratulations to Antonio Rendon-Romero who successfully passed his PhD viva covering his work on long-period grating sensors for Campylobacter jejuni detection.

Celebrating Antonio's viva success. (left to right: Thomas Kissinger, James Barrington, Sam Gibson, Nick Davis, Tom Charrett, James Bremner, Erica Alcusa-Sáez, Antonio Rendon-Romero, Huseyin Pekmezci, Steve Staines)

SPIE Optical Metrology: Munich 2019

SPIE's biennial Optical Metrology conference was held in Munich in June 2019. Engineering Photonics was represented by Tom Charrett, Dan Francis, Sam Gibson, Thomas Kissinger, and Kieran Wiseman, who all presented within the Optical Measurement Systems for Industrial Inspection sub-conference.

The Neues Rathaus on Marienplatz.

During the opening talk 'Hot Topics in Classical Interferometry' by Peter de Groot of Zygo Coorporation, Thomas Kissinger was highlighted as one the key talks to see. Later, at the Optical Metrology plenary session, former Engineering Photonics research fellow and PhD student Roger Groves was awarded an SPIE fellowship.

Optical Metrology conference reception at the Ratskeller (L-R Thomas, Kieran, Sam, Dan, and Tom).

Roger Groves receiving his SPIE Fellowship at Optical Metrology plenary lecture.

Conference papers

PIERS: Rome 2019

In June, Jane Hodgkinson took a long train journey to Rome to present an invited paper on laser spectroscopy instrumentation for detection of volatile biomarkers of infectious disease at PIERS. PIERS, the PhotonIcs and Electromagnetics Research Symposium held its 41st edition at the Faculty of Engineering - University of Rome "La Sapienza".

View of the Vatican and St. Pauls from the river Tiber in Rome.

Invited Conference Presentation

Spectroscopic Instrumentation for Measurement of Gaseous and Volatile Biomarkers of Infectious Disease
J Hodgkinson, D Francis, C Walton, C  Lourenço, J Sizer*, P Black, B Livingstone, D P Fowler, M K Patel, and R P Tatam

EUSPEN: June 2019

In June, the 19th international conference and exhibition of the European Society for Precision Engineering and Nanotechnology (EUSPEN) was held in Bilbao, Spain. Engineering Photonics was represented by Angus Bridges who presented his work on non-linearity correction algorithms in interferometry.

Conference Paper

A comparison of non-linearity correction algorithms in optical interferometry
A Bridges, T Kissinger, A Yacoot*, and R P Tatam
*NPL, Teddington, UK

Fibre optic shape sensing colloquium: London 2019

Thomas Kissinger, in his role as a member of the Instrument science and technology group (ISAT) committee of the Institute of Physics,  organised a meeting entitled “Fibre optic shape and deformation sensing: an emerging technology” at the IoP in London 7th May 2019. The meeting featured presentations from researchers from the UK, Netherlands and Ireland with an interest in the development and practical application of fibre-optic based techniques for the measurement of shape. The talks covered applications in diverse areas, including  biomedical, aerospace, civil engineering, and flow measurement.

The Thames at dusk featuring The Shard (© Dan Francis).



  • Overview of fibre-optic shape and deformation sensing techniques
    Thomas Kissinger
    Presented at the IoP meeting 'Fibre optic shape and deformation sensing: an emerging technology', London, May 2019
  • Fibre-optic shape sensing for aerospace structures
    Stephen James
    Presented at the IoP meeting 'Fibre optic shape and deformation sensing: an emerging technology', London, May 2019

Nucleus STEM lecture: Optical Fibre Technology

In May, Steve James gave a lecture to Key-Stage 3 students at Northampton Academy as part of the Nucleus series of STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) lectures.

Professor James talked about how optical fibres are produced, and how methods have changed to become more efficient. He demonstrated optical fibres and explained the history of optical fibres, which goes back a lot further than most people would expect. He also explained some of the uses of optical fibres, that go beyond the use in communications that we are most familiar with; including how optical fibres can be used as sensors for chemicals, gases, pressure and force. Some of the uses of optical fibres being studied and developed include testing rail components, the stress on aircraft wings and environmental sensors.

This led to some excellent questions from the students and expanded their interest in this field.

Steve giving his lecture on optical fibre technology at Northampton Academy.

Photonics West, San Francisco 2019

In February, Kevin Mullaney travelled to the US to present his latest work on accurate laser frequency stabilisation at OPTO. The OPTO conference is part of SPIE's Photonics West and is held at the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

Yerba Buena gardens which are just outside the Moscone Center (© Dan Francis)

OPTO is one of the largest and most important optoelectronics conferences in the calendar and addresses the latest developments in a broad range of optoelectronic technologies and their integration for a variety of commercial applications.


Conference paper

AIAA SciTech Forum: San Diego 2019

In January, Steve James travelled to the US to attend the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Science and Technology Forum and Exposition (AIAA SciTech) .  The paper he presented was part of a special session “BladeSense - A novel approach for measuring helicopter rotor blade deformation” at which members of the Bladesense project, including Steve, Simone Weber, and Mudassir Lone from Cranfield University, and Dominic Southgate from Helitune, gave a series of talks leading the audience through the project and progress to date.

The San Diego harbour. The AIAA SciTech forum was held in the Manchester Grand Hyatt, the left-most tower in the image.


Conference presentation

  • A novel direct fibre optic shape sensing approach
    S W James, T Kissinger, K Mullaney, E Chehura, J Barrington, S Staines, and R P Tatam
    Presented at the AIAA SciTech Forum, San Diego, USA 7-11 Jan 2019

MetMap: Sheffield 2019

In January, Tom Charrett and Thomas Kissenger attended MetMap: The integrated metrology for precision manufacturing conference, held at the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre in Sheffield.

Tom presented their joint paper describing their work developing a multi-dimensional position sensor for robotic applications. The presentation slides can be seen here 


 Conference presentation