OSC Colloquium: Grover Swartzlander

    Thursday, November 21, 2019 - 3:30pm - 5:00pm
    Meinel 307

    1630 E. University Blvd.

    3rd Floor Lobby area


    Open to campus and public.


    Speaker: Grover Swartzlander 

    Topic: Diffractive Light Sails and Beam Riders

    Host: Rolf Binder

    Visit our website for future lecture dates and speaker information: http://www.optics.arizona.edu/news-events/events/colloquium For a list of our archived lectures: http://www.optics.arizona.edu/news-events/events/colloquium/archive


    Similar  to the early days of the Wright brothers, this period in

    history marks the dawn of the Age of Light Sails  for  propelling

    vehicles  through outer space. The combined emergence of a devel‐

    oping space economy, Cube Sat technology, metamaterial  and  pho‐

    tonic  advancements  provides  opportunities to significantly ad‐

    vance both solar and laser driven sails.  In particular,  passive

    and  electro‐optically active space variant diffractive films of‐

    fer the potential to replace conventional mechanical systems with

    low  mass, low failure rate optical systems for propulsion, navi‐

    gation, and attitude control.   The  design  and  fabrication  of

    large,  broadband,  high efficiency, space qualified, diffractive

    films is a current challenge.  Another difficulty is the  limited

    ability to verify sail designs on Earth.  Whereas radiation pres‐

    sure can be used to compete against solar gravity in space, it is

    orders  of  magnitude weaker than terrestrial gravity.  This talk

    will describe diffractive light sails and torsion oscillator  ex‐

    periments  used  to  validate  concepts such as a laser‐propelled

    diffractive beam rider.  A constellation of solar polar  orbiting

    instruments will also be described, which make use of diffractive

    sails to enable the first images of the solar poles.

    Speaker Bio(s): 

    Grover Swartzlander has pioneered optical radiation pressure for over 20 years,

    including optical force and torque from optical vortices, cambered refractive surfaces,

    gravitational assist analogs in optics, and most recently, light sails comprised of diffractive

    optical elements, including a passive optical beam rider.

    Primarily an experimentalist, he is best known for optical tweezers, optical

    vortex soliton, and optical vortex coronagraph measurements.

    He is a Fellow of the Optical Society of America, a 3-time NASA NIAC Fellow, and he

    was the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the Optical Society of America, B until 2019.


    Refreshments 3:30pm

    Lecture @ 3:45pm - 5pm