Scheme: Leverhulme Trust Senior Research Fellowship
Organisation: University of St Andrews
Dates: Sep 2015-Aug 2016
Summary: This project summary is not available for publication.
Scheme: Wolfson Research Merit Awards
Dates: Aug 2008-Sep 2013
Summary: Light is incredible. 2010 marks the 50th anniversary of the laser. My research looks at the way light moves or propagates in space. the aim of the work is to explore and apply the concepts of "optical sculpting" to light to allow it to do things it would not normally do: examples include beating diffraction over certain distances and making light appear to move in curved paths. These advances as well as others are then applied to number of inter-related areas to exemplify the importance. These include
- optical trapping. This area has revolutionised the way we understand cell and molecular biology and the onset of disease. Our work has assisted in this process and shed new light on fundamental topics using or sculpted light fields. This inlcudes looking at the classical-quantum interface with trapping in vacuum
- Cell transfection. Light fields are shown now to be able to deliver therapeutic agents to cells at will. Our shaped beams and judicious choice of laser wavelength now mean we can really expand the optical toolkit and assist cell biolgists and medicine to understand how to transport difficult to deliver material to cells, including neuronal cells
- Imaging: using the shaping of light to create images through ultra thin strands of optical fibre and section large objects with horizontal sheets of light
- Raman analysis gives a biochemical fingerprint of a material. In particular for clinical medicine it may allow for the early diagnosis of cancer and other diseases. This is thus of major benefit to society. A new study this year has used raman analysis for looking at the toxicology of spirits and the trace detection of methanol and using enhanced techniques with fibre based studies.
Scheme: International Incoming Fellowships
Dates: Nov 2005-Oct 2006