Edmund Optics has announced the 45 finalists for its 2015 Educational Award, which acknowledges novel projects involving optics that will have an impact on future application, and is given annually to undergraduate and graduate programs in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics at non-profit colleges and universities working on projects involving optics.
Fifteen finalists were selected from the Americas, Asia, and Europe, for a total of 45 finalists from 23 countries. All finalists will also be eligible for the Norman Edmund Inspiration Award, which is given to the optics program that best embodies the legacy of Norman Edmund. It consists of $5,000 in product donations.
Educational Award recipients from each region will be announced on October 13, 2015. Each region will award a Gold ($10,000 in products); a Silver ($7,500 in products); and a Bronze ($5,000 in products). Additionally, Edmund Optics will present 36 $500 Product Matching Awards to 12 recipients in each of the three regions.
Now in its sixth year, the award program is the most competitive it has ever been, according to Kirsten Bjork-Jones, Director of Global Marketing Communications.
"This has been our most competitive year yet with applications focusing on the environment, energy and life sciences. We are in awe over the innovative solutions submitted to address some very critical challenges facing our world," she said. "It is so rewarding to know that we can provide the tools and support to help inspire this level of optical innovation. This is what Edmund Optics is all about."
More than 850 applications were received from all over the world, including applications such as a vision system for the early detection of forest fires, and the advancement of optical techniques to investigate alternative energy sources. Additionally entries include discovering new and non-invasive methods for pneumothorax diagnosis in premature babies and the development of a smartphone spectrometer for real-time environmental monitoring or health diagnostics such as Ebola detection.
Edmund Optics’ global award team will select three recipients in each region, based on two criteria: (1) Technical merit, which is the application of optics in the program, and (2), the innovative use of optics in a laboratory or research setting.
View more information on the awards.
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