• FIP Pioneer Award

    To recognize the dedicated contributions that researchers have made in the photonics community, the Fitzpatrick Institute for Photonics (FIP)has created a FIP Pioneer Award to honor these individuals.  The 2018 FIP Pioneer Award was presented to Steven Chu, Nobel Laureate in Physics (1997). Read more.

  • Exploring Light Technologies

    A community celebration in honor of International "Introduce a Girl to Photonics" Week was held October 9, 2016, at the Fitzpatrick Center on Duke's West Campus.

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  • Pattern Formation at Ultra-Low Light Levels

    From swarming bacteria to social interactions among humans, the emergence of patterns in nature is ubiquitous. Bonnie Schmittberger writes about the efforts of Daniel Gauthier's research group in this area (PDF).


  • Handheld Simultaneous SLO and OCT Imaging System

    Scanning laser ophthalmoscopy (SLO) and optical coherence tomography (OCT) are laser-based imaging systems used by ophthalmologists to detect retinal pathology. This system combines SLO and OCT in a single device. By acquiring high-speed SLO en-face images simultaneously with OCT, retinal motion can be estimated and used to correct for patient motion within an OCT volume. Read more.

  • Megapixel Camera? Try Gigapixel

    By synchronizing 98 tiny cameras in a single device, electrical engineers from Duke University and the University of Arizona have developed a prototype camera that can create images with unprecedented detail. The camera’s resolution is five times better than 20/20 human vision over a 120 degree horizontal field. Read more.

  • Breast Cancer Research

    ABC News featured new technology for breast cancer by Professor Nimmi Ramanujam of the Biomedical Engineering Department, Duke University. Her device is able to alert the surgeon during the surgery whether more suspect tissue needs to be removed which helps prevent patients from undergoing multiple breast cancer surgeries. Read more.

Welcome to the Fitzpatrick Institute for Photonics

The Fitzpatrick Institute for Photonics is an extensively interdisciplinary Duke effort to advance photonics and optical sciences. The institute leverages Duke's faculty from the Pratt School of Engineering, Trinity Arts and Sciences, and the Duke Medical School to explore problems at the boundary nexus of nano-bio-info-opto convergence.

The mission of the Fitzpatrick Institute is profoundly educational. The institute was founded in 2000 in part to meet an unmet industry need for graduates with the knowledge and skills to transform industrial R&D in photonics and optical science. Our faculty teach undergraduates, master's and doctoral students and foster the technical, collaboration, interdisciplinary exploration, and team-orientation skills set that enables our proteges to thrive in their chosen professions.

As an extension of our education focus, we are highly tuned to the needs of the applied optics industry. We welcome opportunities to place students for internships, to conduct sponsored research, and to broadly collaborate. We invite interested companies to explore our industry partners program.

Our research encompasses eight broad initiative areas: biophotonics, nano/micro systems, quantum optics and information photonics, advanced photonics systems, nanophotonics, metamaterials and plasmonics, systems modeling and novel spectroscopies.