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ICOS @ The Great Exhibition Road Festival

Date: 17-18 June 2023

Time: 12:00-17:30

Location: Goethe-Institut London, 50 Princes Gate, Exhibition Rd, London SW7 2PH

ICOS are excited to once again be part of The Great Exhibition Road Festival! Join us for a fun weekend for all ages celebrating science and the arts. Our stalls on Quantum Optics will be located at Goethe-Institut, covering the basics of light to technological applications of Quantum Optics.  (


Spotlight on Photonics

Every month we invite a researcher, PhD student or post doc, from Imperial to speak about their work in photonics and optics. This is a great way to stay up-to-date with diverse and leading research that share a common themes of optics and photonics. If you can't make the talk in-person we can provide a video call link on request - but you will miss out on the refreshments!


Next talk:

Date: TBC

Speaker: TBC

Title: TBC

We have temporarily put the Spotlight on Photonics series on hold while students are away for summer, with the plan being to continue the talks in October. If you are interested in presenting your research, please get in touch through the contact page on this site!



We organise regular drinks, meals out and fun activities across London. these are only loosely based around optics, but are greater opportunity chat about your research and/or let off a bit of steam.


Seminar by Prof. Rachel Grange
Bottom-up assembly of nanocrystals for nonlinear, electro-optic, and quantum devices

Abstract: Nonlinear and electro-optic devices are present in our daily life with many applications: light sources for microsurgery, green laser pointers, or modulators for telecommunication. Most of them use bulk materials such as glass fibres or high-quality crystals, hardly integrable or scalable. Even the fast developments of thin film lithium niobate face the challenging etching of metal-oxides. Therefore, the quest for a non-centrosymmetric material system, easy to fabricate and to scale up while maintaining its functionality is still ongoing. Here we will present our recent advances on bottom-up photonic assemblies of randomly oriented nanocrystals and how we can produce electro-optic, nonlinear and parametric down conversion signals. First, barium titanate metalenses synthesized by a sol-gel technique will be demonstrated. Then, we will show how the electro-optic response in assembled nanostructures can be as strong as certain other perfect crystalline structure. Finally, we will generate photon pairs from free-standing lithium niobate microcubes  and  III-V nanowires at the telecommunication wavelength through the spontaneous parametric down-conversion process.


Rachel Grange

ETH Zurich, Department of Physics, Optical Nanomaterial Group

Since 2021, Rachel Grange is an associate professor in integrated optics and nanophotonics in the Department of Physics at ETH Zurich. She has been assistant professor at ETH Zurich since 2015. From 2011 to 2014, she was junior group leader at the Friedrich Schiller University in Jena, Germany. Her research covers material investigations at the nanoscale, top-down and bottom-up fabricated nanostructures with metal-oxides, mainly lithium niobate and barium titanate.

The International Day of Light 2022 

On Monday 16th of May ICOS visited King's College London where researchers in photonics and optics, glass makers, and artists came together to celebrate the International Day of Light through seminars, glass-pulling and art installations that represent current optical research.

Our Secretary Anna Fischer, Dr. Cynthia Vidal and Dr. Raziman Valapu, from Imperial College, worked with local artists to create a visual representation of their research into nanophotonic lasers, single photon emission and complex laser networks. ICOS VP Emma Pearce demonstrated a working compact non-linear interferometer for imaging with undetected photon.

There were talks throughout the day from professors in nanophotonics and chemistry, award winning lighting designers, glass artists and holographers, giving their different perspectives on light from the nano to the architectural scale.


We finished off the day with a drinks reception and then regrouped with the ICOS members for a great meal at Baozilnn!

For more work by Grace Pappas (Fresnel Lens):

Instagram: grace_pps

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