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07 February 2020

The Optical Society Awards the 2020 Joseph Fraunhofer Award/Robert M. Burley Prize Recipient

Innovative optical engineer honored for contributions to the field

WASHINGTON—The Optical Society (OSA) is pleased to name Jannick Rolland, University of Rochester, USA, the recipient of the 2020 Joseph Fraunhofer Award/Robert M. Burley Prize. Rolland is recognized for numerous creative and innovative applications in several fields of optical engineering including Astronomy, Medical Imaging, Augmented & Virtual Reality, Image science, and Freeform Optics.

“As a result of her many innovative contributions, Jannick Rolland has significantly advanced optical engineering across a wide range of applications,” said 2020 OSA President Stephen D. Fantone, founder and president of the Optikos Corporation. “We salute her extraordinary work in the fields of optical instrumentation and system engineering.”

Jannick Rolland earned an optical engineering diploma from the Institut D'Optique Théorique et Appliquée, France, and M.S. and Ph.D. in optical science from the University of Arizona. She is the Brian J. Thompson Professor in Optical Engineering at the University of Rochester, USA. She is the director of the Center for Freeform Optics (CeFO) supported by the National Science Foundation in the U.S. and corporations worldwide, and CTO and co-founder of LighTopTech, a biotech company. 

Rolland thrives developing novel optical engineering solutions across a wide range of field. She designed the optics for SPOT4, a satellite in orbit from 2008-2013 to monitor the earth. In medical imaging, she developed the mathematics to describe the “lumpy background” noise that plagues medical images, which gave rise to a widely-adopted method to assess image quality in diagnostic instruments. She invented Gabor-domain optical coherence microscopy for high-definition 3D imaging, and is an early contributor to augmented reality while advancing freeform optics, a disruptive technology poised to penetrate a variety of markets. She is a fellow of OSA, SPIE, and NYSTAR, and the recipient of the 2014 OSA David Richardson Medal and the 2017 Edmund A. Hajim Outstanding Faculty Award.

First presented in 1982, the Joseph Fraunhofer Award recognizes significant research accomplishments in the field of optical engineering. The prize was added in 1992 in memory of Robert M. Burley, who exemplified many of the highest attributes of the optical engineer and was the first recipient of the award. The award and prize are endowed by the Baird Corporation, the Burley Family and Prof. Shin-Tson Wu.

About The Optical Society

The Optical Society (OSA) is dedicated to promoting the generation, application, archiving, and dissemination of knowledge in optics and photonics worldwide. Founded in 1916, it is the leading organization for scientists, engineers, business professionals, students, and others interested in the science of light. OSA’s renowned publications, meetings, online resources, and in-person activities fuel discoveries, shape real-life applications and accelerate scientific, technical, and educational achievement.

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