College of Optical Sciences Receives $10 Million, Largest Gift for Scholarships in UA History

The University of Arizona’s world-renowned College of Optical Sciences has received a $10 million gift for graduate student scholarships, setting a new precedent as the largest gift towards any scholarship in the University’s history.

Professor Emeritus James C. Wyant — who is well-known throughout the optics industry for his academic and professional society leadership, profound expertise and establishment of several commercial enterprises — made this gift in celebration of the college’s 50th anniversary.

“Jim Wyant’s leadership has been remarkable, and the College of Optical Sciences is a major point of pride for the University of Arizona,” said UA President Ann Weaver Hart. “Jim’s gift provides fantastic opportunities for our students to excel in their studies and to conduct the kind of ground-breaking research that is certain to impact all of our lives.”

Click here to read full story.


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UofA Optical Sciences Presentation: Electro-Optical Sensors 1-22-2014


University of Arizona College of Optical Sciences

JANUARY 22, 2014

3:45 – 5:00 pm

Conf. Room 821

1630 E. University Blvd.


DAVID A. THOMAS, PhD – Engineering Consultant

MALCOLM PANTHAKI – Comet Solutions, Founder & Chief Technology Officer



The design and construction of Electro-Optical (EO) sensors require the combined efforts of a variety of engineering disciplines, each having specialized expertise and each working with specialized tools. We have developed a COTS Model Based System Engineering (MBSE) software environment that allows small teams of lead discipline engineers to work in a more collaborative fashion than has previously been possible by sharing CAD and CAE results across discipline boundaries in a robust way. The primary focus of our initial development efforts has been the efficient evaluation of Structural/Thermal/Optical (STOP) effects in optical sensors at a high degree of engineering fidelity.

This talk will start with a discussion of what we mean by MBSE as applied to EO sensor design and provide examples of how it has been applied in two different sensor projects. We will conclude with a real time demonstration of the MBSE environment as it was used in these projects to illustrate the operation and features of the environment and the benefits derived from working in this manner.

Bio – David Thomas

David Thomas holds a PhD in Optical Sciences from the University of Arizona and has over 30 years of experience as an optical engineer of space borne EO sensors for NASA and National Security Space applications. His research interest for the past 15 years has been concurrent design of optical systems and the development of a new Model Based System Engineering (MBSE) software environment for enabling that work to be conducted more effectively.

Bio- Malcolm Panthaki

Malcolm Panthaki holds a Master’s degree in Structural Engineering and Computer Graphics from Cornell University. He has over 25 years of experience developing simulation environments whose main purpose is to make engineering analysis more effective in the design of complex systems. At Abaqus Inc., he led the architecture and design of the Abaqus/CAE environment. He founded Comet Solutions, Inc. in 2001, and provided the vision and architecture for the Comet MBSE Workspace. Comet facilitates effective multi-physics, multi-fidelity analyses of complex systems in a collaborative team environment.


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CBS This Morning Show – How Bad is Light Pollution?

CBS This Morning Show – November 30, 2013

Light pollution is an ever-growing problem that is blocking out the night sky in major cities, obscuring all but the moon and a few bright stars and planets. Bob Parks, executive director of the International Dark Sky Association joins “CBS This Morning: Saturday” to discuss what can be done to combat this growing problem.

Click this link to view the November 30, 2013 show:  CBS This Morning Show – How Bad is Light Pollution?

A prior CBS show on Light Pollution, June 27, 2012 can be viewed at:  The Costs of Light Pollution


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Arizona-Sonora Business Resource Guide – Listings are Free


The first-ever Arizona-Sonora Business Resource Guide is seeking listings from companies and trade groups ready to do cross-border business.

Arizona’s manufacturers, suppliers, logistics companies, trade groups, economic development organizations and others with the ability to do business in Arizona and Sonora are encouraged to register their profile for the first-ever ARIZONA-SONORA BUSINESS RESOURCE GUIDE.  Listings are free.

To submit a listing, please visit:

The ARIZONA-SONORA BUSINESS RESOURCE GUIDE is a collaboration between the Arizona Daily Star and the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.   The guide will be available next spring in both print and electronic formats, in English and in Spanish.


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L3C: Companies with a Non-profit Soul

A panel of experts will explore the pros and cons of registering as an L3C for mission-focused companies – Thursday, Nov. 21, 2013 at 5:30 p.m.

Additional information is available at the following links:

Pima County Public Library




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A Great Night for ARGOS and LBTO

ARGOS (Advanced Rayleigh guided Ground layer adaptive Optics System) will eventually bring Ground Layer Adaptive Optics (GLAO) capabilities to LBT.  ARGOS is dedicated to observations with LUCI1 and LUCI2, LBTO’s pair of near-IR imagers and multi-object spectrographs.

ARGOS is projecting three beams per LBT’s eye, creating a constellation of three artificial stars on a circle of 2′ in radius. This constellation will allow a significant improvement of the image quality over the 4′ field of view of the LUCIs. Each of the six Nd:YAG lasers sends a beam of green (532nm) pulses at a rate of 10kHz with a power of 14W to 18W. Three beams are launched to the sky on-axis from a mirror on the back of each of the two LBT secondary mirrors.

On the night of Nov5, 2013, the lasers were propagated on the sky for the first time.

For the full story, click the following link:

It’s Happening at LBT

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National Photonics Initiative with Rep. Ron Barber AZ-Star Article

BRIEFING & OPEN FORUM with REPRESENTATIVE RON BARBER Aug 14, 2013 – UofA College of Optical Sciences

As part of the effort to support the National Photonics Initiative (NPI) –
and the recommendations in the NPI white paper “Lighting the Path to a Competitive, Secure Future,” NPI and the University of Arizona have joined together in support of this initiative and to raise awareness of photonics to Representative Ron Barber, U.S. House of Representatives, and the community.

See the Arizona Daily Star Article:

Arizona Daily Star Article


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National Academy of Engineering Regional Meeting


NAE – National Academy of Engineering – Regional Meeting

May 20, 2013  –  12:30 – 5:45 p.m.

University of Arizona, College of Optical Sciences

Brochure with Additional Details



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Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program Information For Researchers And Small Businesses (incl. STTR Army Topics FY2013)

Date/Time:  January 29, 2013  9:00 AM -  5:00 PM

Registration for this event is open from:  January 02, 2013 08:00 AM – January 28, 2013 08:00 PM

Click Here to Register

Event description:

The U.S Army Research laboratory announces their Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program topics for 2013 in January – Join us to learn details about the topic, meet the Program Manager and learn how the government works with small businesses.

The STTR Program purpose is to stimulate a partnership of ideas and technologies between innovative small business concerns and research institutions through Federally-funded research or research and development. The Army-wide Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program is managed by the Army Research Office (ARO).

9:00am – 12:30pm
Army SBIR/STTR Program Overview
SBIR/STTR Reauthorization Update
FY13 Army STTR Topics Review
Marketing to the Department of Defense (R&D)
Yuma Proving Ground Overview
University of Arizona Technology Transfer opportunities
Lunch (12:30pm – 1:30pm)
1:30pm – 5:00pm
Individual meetings with Dr. Guay, Mr. Christ, Researchers and small business owners

The Army’s STTR Program Office will release 21 topics for 2013 that include the following disciplines:
Information Systems Technology
Chemical Biological Defense
Sensors/Electronics and Electronic Warfare

Brad Guay, PhD, Army STTR Program Manager, Army Research Office
David Christ, Small Business Programs Specialist, Army Research Office
Alan Tinseth, SBIR/STTR Coordinator, Technology and Investments Directorate, Yuma Proving Ground
Sherry Hoskinson, University of Arizona, Tech Launch Arizona
Army Research Office
The mission of the ARO, as part of the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL), is to execute the Army’s extramural basic research program in these disciplines: chemical sciences, computing sciences, electronics, materials science, mathematical sciences, mechanical sciences, network sciences, life sciences, social sciences, and physics.

Yuma Proving Ground
Yuma Proving Ground plans and conducts a wide variety of materiel developmental and operational testing, and extreme-environment testing in support of US government, international, and commercial customers at its three subordinate test centers.



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Tucson Tech Showcase & Innovation Forum Feb. 16, 2013

Tucson at the Cutting Edge of Science and Technology (Sponsor and Exhibitor Opportunities)

On February 16, 2013 the Arizona Technology Council will present the 1st Annual Tech In Tucson Showcase and the Forum on Technology Innovation and Economic Development In Southern Arizona. Sign-up today to help us show-off Tucson at the cutting edge of science, technology and innovation.

Bob Breault, Chair, Arizona Optics Industry Association, Mike Sember, Chair, BioIndustry Organization of Southern Arizona, and Alex Rodriguez, Director, Southern AZ Region, Arizona Technology Council, are encouraging Tucson technology companies, educators, University researchers, and education and community organizations to sign-up as sponsors or exhibitors for the these events. You need to be there to showcase your research, technology innovations, or STEM (Science,  Technology, Engineering and Math) education programs.

The Showcase and Forum is presented in conjunction with the statewide Arizona SCITECH festival and Tucson’s 2nd Annual Science In The City festival in downtown Tucson. Science In The City is a Signature event of the Arizona SCITECH festival.

Join us as we “show-off” Tucson’s amazing technology companies, showcase technology development at the University of Arizona, and brief the Tucson community about the technology industry’s contribution to the Tucson economy. We are also going to showcase Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM) education programs and talk about STEM education, what is, why it is important for our children, and how it leads to innovation, high paying jobs, and a vibrant regional economy.

If you are creating new innovations in technologies such as Optics, Information Technology, Biosciences, Aerospace and Defense, Electronics and Semiconductors, Environmental Technology/Alternative Energy, or you are an education or community organization providing STEM education, please register today:

Science In The City Family SCIfest – 10:00 am – 2:00 pm  Children of all ages will experience exciting hands on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) activities, and families will discover innovative K-12 science, technology, engineering and math student projects and school programs.

Tech In Tucson Showcase – 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Technology Innovation and Economic Development In Southern Arizona – Forum – 2:00 – 3:00 pm  For adults, and high school and college students.


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