A ground breaking horizon scanning report on the future of photonics research 2030 and beyond has been released by the Photonics Leadership Group and the All-Party Parliamentary Group in Photonics and Quantum. The PLG brought together 26 of the UK’s leading photonics researchers from 20 different institutions to ask “what will be the focus of photonics research a decade and more from now?”
Recognising all R&D takes place in an ever developing socio-economic environment, the report also identifies nine major challenges that photonics will have a key role in addressing. Ranging from future mobility, healthy-aging and real-time secure communications to responsive manufacturing, food production and defence; it is clear that photonics not only already makes a major contribution to society, but will be absolutely instrumental in addressing the challenges of the future.
The report makes 7 clear recommendations to translate the identified topics into funded research balanced across all domains. The recommendations also call on those working in vertical markets to integrate this future vision into their technology roadmaps to ensure the very best and most advance photonics is rapidly pulled through into applications for the benefit of all.
Described by some of the UK’s leading photonics researchers as “an excellent and timely report” capturing how much “it is an exciting time for the field”, it is hoped the highlighted topics stimulate discussion on the future directions for photonics as well as inspire the next generation of researchers.
Co-director of London Light Anatoly Zayats said “It is very important for the photonics community to have a global view of the challenges, trends and needs of photonic science and technology in the years to come. We hope very much the document will provide the government and industry with understanding where photonics goes and its role in the future of our society.”
John Lincoln, Chief Executive of the PLG said “It has been an incredible cathartic and inspirational exercise to take a break from all of our current challenges and look to the future and consider the huge diversity of photonics still to be discovered.”