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What We Talk About When We Talk About Light†

M. D. Forbes
Published 2015 · Medicine

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UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) has declared 2015 the “International Year of Light and Light-Based Technologies”. In celebration of this proclamation, this Outlook provides a general history of light and its applications, from the earliest moments of the Big Bang through its present impact on all forms of life on the planet. Special emphasis is placed on fundamental advances in the generation and use of artificial light, as well as the harvesting and use of light from the Sun and other natural sources. During the past century, the role of light in the fields of physics, chemistry, and biology has expanded to include emerging fields such as environmental engineering, agriculture, materials science, and biomedicine. In this regard, future research challenges and new potential applications in these areas, in the context of “the central science”, are presented and discussed.
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