Yang hosts Nature Communications photonics conference at WashU

Lan Yang will host a global conference on photonics at WashU Nov. 11-13

Beth Miller 
Lan Yang

Named editor-in-chief of Photonics Research

Nearly 100 of the world's leading experts in photonics, the technology involving the properties and transmission of photons, will converge on Washington University in St. Louis Nov. 11-13 to share the latest research and advances in topological photonics, from concepts to devices.

Lan Yang, the Edwin H. & Florence G. Skinner Professor in the School of Engineering & Applied Science, is hosting the global conference, sponsored by Nature Communications, a high-impact, peer-reviewed scientific journal that covers the natural sciences, such as physics, chemistry, biology and Earth sciences. In addition to photonics, the conference will include sessions on topological effects in 2D systems as well as lasers and devices.

Yang, a faculty member in the Preston M. Green Department of Electrical & Systems Engineering, is internationally renowned for her research in photonics and her Micro/Nano Photonics Research Group, which focuses on the silicon-chip-based, ultra-high-quality micro-resonators and their applications for sensing, lasing, nonlinear optics, environmental monitoring, biomedical research and communication.

Recently, Yang has published results of novel research in the loss-gain phenomenon. She and her team were able to provide new schemes and techniques to engineer a physical system by controlling loss. Further, she invented a new technique to control lasing emissions from an on-chip microlaser. In addition, her team demonstrated for the first time the transfer of chaos between two largely detuned optical fields mediated by opto-mechanical effects in a high-quality micro-resonator.

Yang's team works on fabrication, characterization and fundamental understanding of advanced nano/micro-photonic devices with outstanding optical properties or novel features for unconventional control of light flow. Her group has demonstrated the first on-chip micro-resonator-based particle sensors that can achieve not only detection but also size measurement of single nanoparticles one by one.

Yang has received numerous honors, including recently being named editor-in-chief of Photonics Research, a journal published by The Optical Society (OSA). During her three-year term, which begins Jan. 1, 2019, she will provide editorial oversight of the journal, which publishes fundamental and applied research progress in optics and photonics. She also joins the OSA Board of Editors. Yang was elected a Fellow of OSA in 2016.

In 2011, she was honored by President Barack Obama with a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. In 2010, she earned a National Science Foundation CAREER Award. She joined the Washington University in St. Louis faculty in 2007.

The McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis promotes independent inquiry and education with an emphasis on scientific excellence, innovation and collaboration without boundaries. McKelvey Engineering has top-ranked research and graduate programs across departments, particularly in biomedical engineering, environmental engineering and computing, and has one of the most selective undergraduate programs in the country. With 165 full-time faculty, 1,420 undergraduate students, 1,614 graduate students and 21,000 living alumni, we are working to solve some of society’s greatest challenges; to prepare students to become leaders and innovate throughout their careers; and to be a catalyst of economic development for the St. Louis region and beyond.

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