UCC Professor honoured with prestigious award

UCC Professor honoured with prestigious award
Prof Nabeel Riza Pic Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

A UCC professor has been honoured with a prestigious award for his decades of research in photonics.

Nabeel Riza, Chair Professor of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, has been awarded the 2019 Edwin H. Land Medal, considered the world's most prestigious prize in imaging science and technology.

A photonics pioneer for more than 30 years, Professor Riza was awarded the medal for the invention and commercialization of pioneering macro- and microscale imaging techniques, as well as the education and mentoring of distinguished scientists and engineers.

Established in 1992 to honour Edwin H. Land for his unique career as scientist, technologist, industrialist, humanist and public servant, the award recognises pioneering work empowered by scientific research to create inventions, technologies, and products and is jointly presented by the International Optical Society (OSA) and the International Society for Imaging Science and Technology (IS&T).

Professor Riza, who was inducted into the US National Academy of Inventors in 2017, holds 46 patents — 28 as single inventor — and has been published internationally 334 times.

He is a pioneer in the use of optical beam-forming techniques for RF imaging phased array radars and optical imagers.

Most recently, Professor Riza invented the CAOS smart camera — a paradigm-changing imager design using principles of the RF mobile phone multiaccess wireless network that provides world record extreme linear dynamic range, inherent image security, extremely low interpixel crosstalk, and full spectral flexibility in one unit not possible in classic CMOS, CCD, and FPA cameras.

On hearing the award news, Professor Riza said he was “speechless and deeply humbled, given that the Edwin H. Land Medal is considered the world's most prestigious prize in imaging science and technology, with former winners including Physics Nobel Prize winners who invented the CCD camera.

“Edwin Land invented the Polaroid camera, the world's first instant photography camera.

“Apple Corp. founder Steve Jobs considered Edwin Land to be his role model, given Land's exceptional inventive powers and concern for humanity, with his inventions showing both artistic elegance and bringing happiness to users around the world,” he added.

“Nabeel Riza is both a prolific inventor of imaging methodology and a gifted educator,” said 2019 OSA President Ursula Gibson.

“The Edwin H. Land Medal is proper acknowledgement of his many contributions to the field of applied optics and to the education and development of new generations of researchers and inventors in this field.”

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