Robert Boyd, Canada Excellence Research Chair in Quantum Nonlinear Optics at the University of Ottawa, has been elected an SPIE Fellow for his achievements in nonlinear optics. The international SPIE society for optics and photonics is a not-for-profit organization founded in 1955 to advance light-based technologies. SPIE Fellows are elected based on their technical achievements and their service to the general optics community, and to SPIE in particular.
Boyd has made significant contributions in optics and optical physics, most significantly in nonlinear optics, his area of specialization. Since the early 1990s, he has worked on developing composite photonic materials—often known as “metamaterials”—as a way of tailoring the linear and nonlinear optical properties of materials for specific tasks.
Boyd correctly predicted that these composite materials could have a nonlinear optical response greater than those of their constituents. He has demonstrated this effect in a wide range of important material systems. Boyd also pioneered the use of “coherent population oscillations” as a way to produce slow and fast light in room-temperature solids.