Lights of Tuscany

A group of motivated physics students joined together just before Christmas in order to spend some days in the beautiful area of Tuscany, Italy and learn more about light-related research and technologies.

The organisers from AISF did an amazing job in the creation of this new event! At the opening ceremony, a set of LIGHTalks gave an introduction into medical applications, quantum sensors, the research done at the University of Pisa and much more. We later visited the European Laboratory for Nonlinear Spectroscopy (LENS) near Florence, where researchers described to us their work on photonics, atomic and biophysics. On Saturday afternoon, we spent some hours at the University of Pisa Physics Department and then at The European Gravitational Observatory EGO-VIRGO. This enormous facility, with arms of a Michelson interferometer extending for several kilometers, aims at proving the existence of gravitational waves through the use of advanced laser technology. On Sunday, we spent a fantastic day in Florence, which is undoubtedly a unique and wonderful city!

We concluded the event with visits of the NEST and TeCIP institutes of the Scuola Normale and Scuola Sant’Anna of Pisa, where we were inspired by great work on nanotechnology and integrated photonics.

The event offered many possibilities to get in contact with researchers at the individual institutes as well as with students from around the world. With participants coming from 14 countries, the event was a true international one.

Many thanks to the organisers!