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Abdullah Gül University Chapter Reflection

by Sumeyye Yildirim & Elif Nur Baysar, AGU Electrical Electronics Engineering

The webinar, the first event of the LIGHTSTALK series in the name of IEEE Photonics Society AGU Chapter, held on February 21, 2024 at 8 pm, turned into an exciting information sharing platform about “Fiber Optic Systems and Their Applications”. Assoc. Prof. Ibrahim Ozdur, who participated as a guest speaker, from Ankara TOBB University of Economics and Technology, Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering. Assoc. Prof. previously worked as a faculty member at Kayseri Abdullah Gül University. Ozdur received his doctorate from the University of Central Florida’s The College of Optics and Photonics – CREOL department in 2011. His doctoral thesis was on microwave photonics and mode-locked lasers. Following graduation, he worked as a Senior Research Scientist at TT Government Solutions, Red Bank, NJ, focusing his career in quantum communications, LIDAR, and optical networking. Assoc. Prof. Ozdur is also the recipient of the Turkish Academy of Sciences Young Scientist Award Program, has published ~90 articles in peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings, and has been awarded 5 US Patents. 

Participating as a guest speaker, Ibrahim Ozdur touched on a wide range of topics, starting from the basics of fiber optic technology to advanced topics, during this event with the participation of approximately 40 people. Many important topics were discussed, from the definition of light, the difference between optics and photonics, electromagnetic wave spectra, coaxial and fiber cables, how fiber optic systems work, how they are used in communication networks and their role in industrial applications.

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Participants encountered content covering everything from A to Z, and at the end of the webinar, they actively asked their questions and exchanged ideas. This event gave its attendees a deeper insight into the dynamic world of fiber optics and helped them better understand the future potential of the technology.

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As our second event, On February 28, 2024, the first meeting of the Co-Stop series successfully took place in a friendly environment among the members and accompanied by coffee. In addition to information sharing and networking opportunities among the participants, a pleasant chat environment was provided where friendships were strengthened. Approximately 45 participants from different departments such as Architecture, Computer Engineering, Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Mechanical Engineering came together. Different perspectives and experiences made the event more productive and diverse, thus providing an in-depth knowledge exchange and learning opportunity among the participants.

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 The primary aim is to create an atmosphere of meeting participants who are interested in photonics and to inform them about photonics. In this regard, the Photonics Society AGU Chapter Chair, Batuhan Can, introduced the Photonics Society AGU Chapter’s Board of Directors to the participants and made a presentation including the purpose and objectives of the society. Thanks to this presentation, participants had the opportunity to understand the broad scope of photonics.

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The questions asked by the participants who were interested in photonics were answered in detail and the participants were enabled to learn more about the topics they were curious about. Participants were given souvenirs from the event, which were specially designed stickers reflecting the Co-Stop theme and were distributed to the participants. In addition to reminding us of the event and the interest in photonics, these stickers also served as a souvenir to evoke memories of how attendees enjoyed the event. Thanks to these small gifts, the participants had a memory of the event that they could remember for a longer time. At the end of the event, IEEE Photonics Society AGU Chapter members took photos to keep memories of this magnificent event.

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In March we had an amazing month with two LIGHTSTALK events. We hosted Dr. Naznin Akter with her talk titled “Volunteering for the IEEE Photonics Society” and Prof. Peter Delfyett with his talk, “’Fundamentals of Laser Science: Techniques and Applications”. In total, more than 100 people from eight different countries joined those events. We also completed our first PHOLTRAN, Photonics & Optics Lectures and Training, series event, which was Foundation Level MATLAB by Dr. Sinan Genc. Nearly 30 students from different fields joined this 10-hour training and learned about the basics of MATLAB. In addition, we had to cancel our CO-STOP, Coffee-Side Talks in Optics & Photonics, because of Ramadan. Last but not least, we continue to donate saplings on behalf of our speakers/trainers for a sustainable future.

On March 5, our LIGHTSTALK#2 event titled “Volunteering for the IEEE Photonics Society” was conducted by Dr. Naznin Akter from Intel Corp. This event, which aimed to enlighten approximately 30 individuals about how to be a volunteer for the Society, was conducted as an extremely informative session. During the webinar, Dr. Naznin Akter discussed various topics such as the IEEE Photonics Society, Young Professionals, IEEE Women in Photonics, and The International Day of Light, as well as potential volunteering activities within the community, and shared her own volunteering experiences within the IEEE. During this presentation, Dr. Naznin Akter emphasized that volunteering is the most important principle. The webinar provided valuable insights and guidance for those interested in volunteering in the future, making it an illuminating and informative event for attendees.

Our eagerly awaited LIGHTSTALK#3 event titled “Fundamentals of Laser Science – Techniques and Applications” illuminated our screens and us on March 20, with the participation of Prof. Peter Delfyett from CREOL. 

Under the profound guidance of Prof. Delfyett, this enticing consultation aimed to enlighten around 70 people about the intricacies and practical applications of laser technological know-how. Prof. Delfyett included a plethora of laser related topics throughout the webinar, especially ‘Same Simple Laser Basics’, ‘Detailed Overview of Laser Components’, and ‘Extreme Light Infrastructure (ELI): The World’s Most Powerful Laser’ or even ‘Homemade Laser’. The information and enjoyment of the esteemed Prof. Delfyett furnished priceless facts and steerage to the attendees, especially those who are interested in optics and laser technology and want to work on this subject. The event turned out to be extremely enlightening and unforgettable for all participants. In this sense, it gladly piqued the interest of folks who are curious about the sphere, and those who are interested in this area were well informed. It provided a thorough exploration and understanding of laser technology, highlighting its immense potential. Prof. Delfyett’s engaging presentation not only broadened our horizons but also ignited a passion for innovation and discovery in this discipline.

For 10 hours, Dr. Sinan Genc delivered basics of MATLAB in our first PHOLTRAN event. Starting from definitions, basic plotting, conditionals, loops, and user defined functions were some of the topics covered. With exercise questions and a final assessment, trainees discovered foundation level MATLAB topics and got ready for the next stage, Intermediate Level MATLAB training that will be organized in September. We believe that this training will contribute, especially for Electrical Electronics Engineering students, to their lectures at Abdullah Gül University.

We had to cancel this month’s CO-STOP #2 event due to Ramadan. After Ramadan, we will continue CO-STOP events in a warm atmosphere filled with the fresh aroma of your favorite coffee! We already agreed for sponsorship with Calibre Coffee for April’s event. Calibre is the 2023 Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) Turkey Coffee Roasting Champion. We are sure that we will be amazed by their coffee beans.

For April’s events and announcements, please feel free to contact us ( and follow us on Instagram,  @aguphotonics,  and LinkedIn,