The innovation engine for new materials

Kevin Valdez


Laguna Blanca

Grade Level: 

Junior High

Teaching Position: 

Science and Engineering


John Harter




Ryan Russell

Research Project Year: 


Research Project Title: 

Laser Holography

Research Project Description: 

Research in the Harter lab at UCSB utilizes optical techniques to study the arrangement of atoms within certain materials, specifically using pulsed lasers and precise experimental control. During this project, I assisted the group with these efforts while also developing an educational outreach project in the area of holograms, which share fundamental aspects of interference and reflectivity with the materials science research.  In holograms, a reference beam and an object beam meet on the holographic plate, with the 3 dimensional signal of the object being stored in the hologram.  Various trials were conducted with attention to multiple variables in order to improve a basic off the shelf kit, included development of a new frame to contain the experiments.  Holograms are a great opportunity to talk about concepts of light, engineering design and the scientific process.

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