Light & Life

By & . Published on 22 September 2015 in:
IYL 2015, September 2015, , ,

Light & Life” was the title of an international symposium held with great success on 21 and 22 July in the prestigious setting of Villa Monastero (Varenna, Lake Como, Italy). The reports presented by Italian and foreign experts – among them Robert A. Lieberman, President Elect of SPIE, the International Society for Optics & Photonics -, and which are now available on the website of the Italian Physical Society [SIF], embraced many areas of basic and applied research based on light sources (from the Sun to common light bulbs, from extreme power lasers to synchrotrons) and their effects (in analysis and investigation techniques, such as microscopy and sensor technology, as well as directly on biological processes). 

“Light” was naturally interpreted in its broadest sense, from one end to the other of the electromagnetic spectrum, from radio waves to X rays and gamma rays. This is why the symposium also included talks on radio telescopes, X and gamma ray astronomy, cosmology and dark matter. Among the most “exotic” was the presentation of the compositional analysis via X-ray fluorescence techniques of the interstellar matter collected in the NASA Stardust mission. A  more “earthly” but also interesting presentation was made on the processes of photosynthesis in plants and on the objectives of biochemical research in this area. 

The Symposium was streamed live thanks to the INFN Multimedia Group. Promoted by SIF in collaboration with various national and international societies, in particular with the Italian Astronomical Society [SAIt], the Italian Society for  Synchrotron Light [SILS] and the Italian Society of Optics and Photonics [SIOF], the symposium aimed to celebrate the International Year of Light [IYL 2015]. It ideally linked up with two other events already organized by SIF: the “Passion for Light” event, in collaboration with the European Physical Society [EPS], which took place in Villa Monastero in September 2011 as the very first launch event of the “Year of Light”, and the opening ceremony of the IYL 2015 in Italy, in collaboration with the National Institute of Metrological Research [INRIM], which was held in Turin in January 2015. Two distant events, but highly significant for the IYL 2015 initiative.

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