Light Robotics Structure-mediated Nanobiophotonics

Publication: ResearchPreface/postscript – Annual report year: 2017

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Scientific disciplines constantly evolve and create new offspring—subdisciplines— that combine the favorable characteristics from its forerunners. The merger of biology and photonics has within the last decade produced one such offspring, Biophotonics, which harnesses light to study biological materials. More recently we have seen the exciting merger of biophotonics with contemporary nanophotonics into so-called nanobiophotonics culminating with the 2014 Chemistry Nobel Prize for superresolution microscopy—now simply coined nanoscopy. The usage of the term Biophotonics in scientific papers curiously began to shoot up after Prasad’s 2003 book “Introduction to Biophotonics,” the first monograph on the field. The aforementioned correlation can mean two things: (1) The book was written at an opportune time when biophotonics was actually taking off; and (2) the book helped clarify the scope of the emerging field for disparate researchers who then contributed to its growth upon realizing how their activities are united in a new context. This book was written along similar lines on the borderline between a plurality of emerging scientific subdisciplines. After years of working on light-driven trapping and manipulation, we can see that a confluence of developments is now ripe for the emergence of a new area that can contribute to nanobiophotonics—Light Robotics—which combines advances in microfabrication and optical micromanipulation together with intelligent control ideas from robotics. This volume collects expert contributions from various areas that are coherently coming together through light robotics. We cover the fundamental aspects of optical trapping systems, microfabrication, and microassembly, and present theoretical principles and experimental illustrations for optimizing the optical force and torque. We also present an array of various new functionalities that are enabled by these new designed structures—light-driven microrobots. Finally, we cover various nanobiophotonics applications demonstrating the use of biophysical tools utilizing light robotics concepts. We have endeavored to make the book accessible to a broad audience from advanced undergraduates and graduate students to practitioners and researchers not only in nanobiophotonics and micro- and nanotechnology, but also to other areas in optics and photonics, mechanical engineering, control and instrumentation engineering, and related fields. We hope that this book is able to do justice in presenting a clearer picture of this emerging field, which is essential to igniting the needed synergy between various stakeholders in the development of this field. We are fortunate to be taking these first steps together with all the contributors from across four continents to whom we owe a debt of gratitude for the time, effort, and expertise devoted into formulating their respective chapters. Thank you very much!
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLight Robotics Structure-mediated Nanobiophotonics
Number of pages2
PublisherElsevier Science
Publication date2017
ISBN (print)9780702070969
StatePublished - 2017
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