The PLG posed the question of “What is on the Horizon for Future Photonics Research” to twenty-five of the UK’s leading photonics academics to generate a picture of where photonics research will be be focused in ten years time. The raw output of that workshop is captured in the summary of seventy topics identified as offering significant potential for future investigation.
Our examination of the future aims to provide a vision for future photonics research possibilities. This horizon scan is the first step of a three stage process and will be followed by assessing the fit with policy grand challenges and industry interest. The concepts articulated cover a diverse range from new, just emerging, research topics to familiar research areas offering further breakthroughs. The wide range is testimony to the variety of photonics, how much is still to be discovered and the ability of further breakthroughs to have major impact on our future across a vast number of applications.
Conceived against a backdrop of growing UK R&D investment to 2.4% of GDP, the horizon scanning exercise has been a realised under the global coronavirus pandemic. The photonics research community has commendable overcome these hurdles to develop a vision looking beyond the immediate challenges to outline a vision for photonics research in 2030.
The outputs of the horizon scan and relevance to the global grand challenges for photonics will be published in a full report in the summer of 2020.