Professor Malvin Teich Elected SPIE Fellow

The SPIE elected 67 new Fellows of the Society this year on March 15. Fellows are members of distinction who have made significant scientific and technical contributions in the multidisciplinary fields of optics, photonics, and imaging. They are honored for their technical achievement, for their service to the general optics community and to SPIE in particular. More than 800 SPIE members have become Fellows since the Society’s inception in 1955.

Dr. Malvin Teich, Professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and Photonics Center at Boston University, was elected for his achievements in the generation, characterization, and detection of classical and nonclassical light.

Professor Teich is a pioneering researcher in the areas of classical and nonclassical light. He demonstrated that heterodyne detection could be achieved in the mid-infrared region of the electromagnetic spectrum in 1966, and that the optical heterodyne process could be understood in terms of the absorption of individual polychromatic photons. Throughout his career, he has carried out extensive experimental and theoretical research, using stochastic point processes to characterize different sources of light and the performance of optical systems using these sources. His work in this area has focused on explaining the noise in avalanche photodiodes and fiber-optic amplifiers, and determining the photon statistics of optical radiation such as luminescence light, Cerenkov light, and squeezed light. Using the classic Franck-Hertz experiment in mercury vapor, he generated the first source of unconditionally photon-number-squeezed light—an important moment in optics.

His research on luminescence led to the development of a family of clustered photon-counting distributions, which were used in the design of the star-scanner guidance system for the Galileo spacecraft and were critical to mitigating the deleterious effects of gamma- and beta-ray emissions from Jupiter. For his groundbreaking research, Professor Teich received numerous awards, including the IEEE Morris E. Leeds Award, the Memorial Gold Medal of Palacký University (Czech Republic), and the IEEE Browder J. Thompson Memorial Prize. In 1995, he was appointed Professor Emeritus of Engineering Science and Applied Physics at Columbia University.

Professor Teich is a fellow of the IEEE, the Optical Society of America, the American Physical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Acoustical Society of America. His work with these and other organizations has been exceptional, in particular as a member of advisory and editorial boards and conference program committees. Professor Teich has also been a valuable member of review committees for numerous councils and foundations such as the National Research Council, the National Institutes of Health, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Max Planck Society, the Royal Society of London, the Canada Foundation for Innovation, and the Swiss National Science Foundation.

Professor Teich has been a program committee member for conferences such as the Wavelets conference at the SPIE Optics + Photonics symposium, the International Workshop on Chaos, Nonlinear Dynamics, and Structures in Biology and Medicine: Optical and Laser Technologies, and the International Conference on Fluctuations and Noise in Photonics and Quantum Optics.

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