Interferometric Optics

F. J. Duarte

Published Research

Current Research Interests

Career Outline

F. J. Duarte is a laser physicist with interests in experimental physics and related theory who has made a number of original contributions to the fields of tunable lasers and quantum optics. He introduced the generalized multiple-prism grating dispersion theory, has made various unique innovations to the physics and architecture of tunable laser oscillators, discovered polymer-nanoparticle gain media, demonstrated low-divergence high-visibilty coherent emission from electrically-pumped organic semiconductors, has pioneered the use of Dirac's quantum notation in classical optics, and derived the probability amplitude for quantum entanglement from quantum interferometric principles, à la Dirac. The initial phase of his work, on quantum N-slit interferometry, led to the introduction of highly-expanded beam (2000:1) quantum interferometric techniques for microscopy and nanoscopy in the American imaging industry (Eastman Kodak Company, 1987).

Duarte studied physics and mathematics at Macquarie University (Sydney Australia) where he was, as an undergraduate, a student of the quantum physicist J. C. Ward. At Macquarie he graduated with First Class Honours in physics and was also awarded a Ph.D. in physics for his research on optically-pumped molecular lasers. His career history includes appointments with Macquarie University, The University of New South Wales, The University of Alabama, State University of New York, the Photographic Research Laboratories, the Imaging Research Laboratories (both at the Eastman Kodak Company), the US Army Missile Command, and the US Army Space and Missile Defense Command (as a research analyst). He has also held honorary appointments at Macquarie University and The University of New Mexico. During the 1987-1992 period he was chairman of the Lasers series of conferences that focused on SDI research and has served on the editorial boards of Applied Optics, Optics & Photonics News, and Optics Letters. In 2006 he founded Interferometric Optics and he is also a Principal Research Scientist at The University of Alabama in Huntsville.

The generalized multiple-prism dispersion theory is applicable to the design of narrow-linewidth tunable laser oscillators as well as to the design of prismatic pulse compressors for ultrashort-pulse high-peak-power lasers. His contributions to tunable laser oscillators include the design and construction of original narrow-linewidth multiple-prism grating (MPG) configurations, initially developed for copper-laser pumped dye lasers, which have also been applied to high-power lasers using gaseous and solid-state gain media. His MPG solid-state laser oscillators were the first to yield tunable high-peak-power, diffraction-limited, single-longitudinal-mode emission, with a Gaussian temporal profile, at the limit allowed by Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle. One of his papers, on laser pulse compression, is listed by the American Institute of Physics as relevant to the 2018 Nobel Prize in Physics.

One of his works, on space-to-space interferometric communications, was selected by Laser Focus World as one of the top technology developments in photonics for 2015. He has also applied research on N slit laser interferometers to the development of aviation instrumentation for clear air turbulence detection. Since 2012 he has published several works on the foundations of quantum entanglement.


Duarte is the author of nearly 200 archival scientific publications including 15 books published by editorials like Academic, CRC, Elsevier, Institute of Physics, and Springer. His contributions are mentioned in more than two hundred scholarly books, including several classics, and his book titles are held at more than four thousand seven hundred libraries, worldwide. Since 2017 he has been appointed Editor of the book series Coherent Sources, Quantum Fundamentals, and Applications for IoP Publishing (London).

His contributions have found applications in astrometry, atmospheric research, chemistry, coherence, cytology, directed energy, dispersive optics, femtosecond laser microscopy, geodesics, gravitational lensing, heat transfer, high-power laser cavity design, imaging, laser isotope separation, laser medicine, laser pulse compression, laser spectroscopy, mathematical transforms, nanophotonics, nonlinear optics, organic optics, polarization rotation, polymer physics, tunable diode laser design, and the nuclear industry.

Current research interests include very large N-slit interferometers, space-to-space interferometric and quantum communications, miniature narrow-linewidth tunable laser oscillators, multiple-prism dispersion theory, fundamentals of quantum entanglement, and the application of Dirac's quantum notation to interferometry and classical optics. His latest books are: Quantum Optics for Engineers, Tunable Laser Optics (2nd Edition), Tunable Laser Applications (3rd Edition), Organic Lasers and Organic Photonics, Fundamentals of Quantum Entanglement, and Quantum Entanglement Engineering and Applications.

Duarte was elected Fellow of the Australian Institute of Physics, in 1987, and a Fellow of the Optical Society of America, in 1993. At the Eastman Kodak Research Laboratories he was recognized with the Chief Technical Officer Patent Award (1995). He has also received the Engineering Excellence Award (1995), for the "invention of the N-slit laser interferometer," and the David Richardson Medal (2016), “for seminal contributions to the physics and technology of multiple-prism arrays for narrow-linewidth tunable laser oscillators and laser pulse compression”, from Optica.

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Note: some papers and book promotions appear under Frank J. Duarte.

First published on the 30th of September, 1997.

Updated on the 7th of October, 2021.