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NanoPhotonics Centre

 

Our paperless lab environment, and how it works for us.

Microsoft SurfaceOur NanoPhotonics Centre pioneers new ways to use IT to improve research productivity for interdisciplinary research.  This was described in more detail in  an article in Nature Methods (2011).

Picture of a Microsoft Surface Pro tablet running OneNote.Electronic Notebooks

There is no paper in the group. All group members use tablet PCs and electronic notebooks, stored on dedicated servers. Besides organising the normal day-to-day work in the lab and storage of data files, this allows us to coordinate collaborative projects and meetings and arrange how and what new experiments should be done. It also let’s us sort out what equipment issues exist in the lab, and how to sort them out, as well as where all our samples are and what has been done to them. Our technology platform uses Microsoft OneNote on Microsoft Surface Pro Tablets, with optimised systems.

Equipment DatabasesOptics and Equipment Databases

All experimental research groups struggle to keep track of the very many lab components (such as optics or electronics) that they have collected over many years. We have central databases that allow simple tracking of these, and highlights current issues on equipment.

Computerised Experimental RigsComputer Controlled Experiment

 All experimental rigs are computer controlled, and accessed remotely from our tablets. You can carry a running experiment around with you in the lab, forming convenient virtual instruments wherever you are. Aligning optical experiments gets much easier this way.

We currently work with Microsoft and HP on some of these projects, connected to the main software teams in the US.  We are always interested in technically able students in Cambridge who want to work with us on these projects.

 

Latest news

NanoPhotonics Centre visited by 533 high school students

28 September 2022

Why do grapes explode in a microwave oven? How does nanostructured chocolate look like? What do nanoparticles on a mirror and Homer Simpson have in common? As part of Physics at Work 2022 , 36 groups of high school students visited our exhibit about plasmonics and nano-optics. Read more here !

IOP news article about recent Sciences Advances paper

22 August 2022

A news article has been written about the recent Sciences Advances paper ' Optical suppression of energy barriers in single molecule-metal binding ' in the IOP optics and photonics research update. Read the article here !

Article featured in Nature Communications Editors’ Highlights

15 July 2022

The recent article 'Hollow-core optical fibre sensors for operando Raman spectroscopy investigation of Li-ion battery liquid electrolytes' has been selected as a featured article in the Nature Communications Editor's highlights. Congratulations to Ermanno and Tijmen! The Editor's highlights can be seen here: https://www...