The press reports are saying that next Newton Medal will be bagged by ‘photonic crystals. The crystal has ability to manipulate lights. US physicist invented this unique piece of physics to repel, steer and trap the light. London-based prestigious Institute of Physics gives the medal as its highest honor. The University of California, Berkeley researcher Prof Eli Yablonovitch proposed the concept of these crystals in his thesis during 1980s.
Now his research has applications in the domain of data processing and wave guidelines in the laser surgeries. The same material has been found in the chameleon skin and bird feathers. On being asked about his reactions on the report, Professor Yablonovitch told the press that he feels honored. Back in 1987, the talented scientists published detailed description of the photonic crystals when it was difficult to manufacture these crystals. The material was given formal name in the later stage.
Physical Review Letters, a well-known science journal informed that his research paper is second most cited document in the history of publication. University of Toronto researcher Sajeev John reported similar observation about the material just three weeks after the original findings were published. New Jersey based Bell Communications Research laboratories developed photonic crystal for the first time under the guidance of Professor Yablonovitch.
But the story has twist. Around 100 years ago, Lord Raleigh, the British Physicist suggested similar idea to the scientists. His articles dated in 1887 put forward the concept of regular structural crystal with an ability to block light of specific wavelengths.