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Career in Photonics


Photonics (a sub-discipline of physics) is the science of generating, detecting and controlling photons (light particles). The branch of study has got wide application in communications, imaging, health care, medicine, defence, optics and electronics etc.

Photons carry information through fibre optic cable, retrieve information in laser radar and other sensor devices and can transport light energy as with laser machining and laser surgery. It’s the technology of generating and harnessing light and other forms of radiant energy whose quantum unit is a photon.

The science includes light emission, transmission, deflection, amplification and detection by optical components and instruments, lasers and other light sources, fibre optics, electro-optical instrumentation, related hardware and electronics and sophisticated systems. In brief, photonics is the technology of mastering light.

From the use of lasers in surgery, telecommunications and computes to the role of charged-couple devices or CCDs in capturing digital family video, discovering new planets and giving robots vision, photonics is having a dramatic impact on our lives.

Photonics technology can also be used in low signal loss optical fibres for long haul under-sea and terrestrial communications, industrial and military applications. The bio-photonics technology is used to develop new procedures and techniques in biotechnology, microbiology, medicine, surgery and other life sciences.

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Photonics Eligibility Criteria

In India, the International School of Photonics (Cochin University of Science and Technology) offers M.Tech, MPhil and PhD programs in Photonics. Apart from this many other universities and engineering colleges across the country offer optoelectronics and photonics as interdisciplinary subjects.

A candidate having Bachelors degree with Physics and Mathematics can pursue M.Sc in Photonics or optoelectronics. With M.Sc in Physics or Photonics, one can pursue MTech/MPhil/PhD in the field.

All major universities of the world offer courses in Photonics and optoelectronics. The University of New South Wales, Institute of Physics (London) and University of Leeds are few renowned institutes abroad offering courses in Photonics and related field.

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Photonics Career Prospects

Scientists, engineers and technicians with relevant qualification and experience of photonics are in great demand in today’s techno-savvy world. Making a career in Photonics is exciting and rewarding.

Students of Photonics and Optoelectronics are absorbed as sales or service engineers in high-tech equipment industries; as researcher or professional officers in universities, government and industry-research laboratories and optical communications’ network support engineers and managers; and also in defence research and development organizations.

Photonics Pay Package

The salary of Photonics researchers and scientists in India is in the range of Rs 20, 000 – to Rs 30, 000 except other perks and benefits.

In countries like US, Canada and UK the annual pay-package of Photonics researchers/scientists varies from $36384 to $116915.

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Photonics Institutes/Universities


  • Cochin University of Science and Technology
    Courses Offered: MTech/MPhil/PhD in Photonics
    Central Electronics Engineering Research Institute
    Pilani, Rajasthan, PIN – 333031 INDIA
    Tele-fax: 01596 – 242294
    Centre of Excellence in Lasers and Optoelectronic Sciences

  • Cochin University of Science & Technology
    Cochin 682 022
    Kerala, India
    Phone: (+91)-484-2575848
    Email: [email protected]
    Course: Integrated M.Sc Course in Photonics
    Course Duration: 5 Years (10 Semesters), Regular Course
    Number of Seats: 20


  • The Photonics Institute, University of New South Wales
Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia
Tel +61 2 9385 1000 (if dialling on campus: x9-9999)
For all emergencies on Kensington campus ring x56666
Courses Offered: Master of Photonics and Optoelectronics,Graduate Diploma in Photonics and Optoelectronics, Graduate Certificate in Photonics and Optoelectronics

  • Australian National University
Canberra ACT 0200, Australia
Local T: 6125 5111
Interstate T: 02 6125 5111
International T: +61 2 6125 5111
Courses Offered: Bachelor’s of science in photonics


  • The Ohio State University
    Enarson Hall 154 W 12th Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43210
    Washington State University
    French Ad 324
    Pullman, WA 99164-1030


  • Institute of Physics, London
    76 Portland Place
    London W1B 1NT, UK
    Tel: +44 (0)20 7470 4800
    Fax: +44 (0)20 7470 4848

  • University of Leeds
    Leeds LS2 9JT, UK
    Switchboard: +44 (0) 113 243 1751
    Fax: +44 (0) 113 244 3923
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