News

Isaac Nape is the inaugural Optica Emerging Leader in Optics Chair

16.01.2024 - Rising star to advance quantum research at the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa.

Wits University and Optica have created a faculty position in experimental quantum optics. The Optica Emerging Leader in Optics Chair will advance research efforts in structured light.

“With a top optics and photonics program, Wits University is a hub for quantum research and a training ground for the next generation of scientists and engineers in quantum optics,” said Michal Lipson, the 2023 Optica president, in December. “We see this new position as an extension of that work and are proud to collaborate with them to accelerate research opportunities.”

Serving as the inaugural Optica Emerging Leader in Optics Chair, Isaac Nape will lead efforts in quantum information processing, focusing on communication and computation. Nape brings prestigious accolades with him to the position, having won the SAIP Silver Medal, the highest physics honor in South Africa for someone under 35 years of age, and achieving recognition on the 2023 list of the Top 200 Young South Africans to watch. In addition, in his short career, Nape has published 25 journal papers, which have gathered more than 1,150 citations in the past five years, and his impact continues.

“Dr Nape is a notable leader, researcher and scientist, but beyond these professional qualities, he’s also passionate about science,” says Andrew Forbes, distinguished professor in the school of physics at Wits University. “These qualities make him an exceptional ambassador for our field and our institution, and we are thrilled to have him serving in this new capacity.”

“It’s a privilege to become the first Optica Emerging Leader in Optics Chair at Wits, and I’m honored to assume the role,” says Nape. “I am fortunate to have great mentors, colleagues and partners on this journey, and I look forward to continuing our collaborations, as well as to future work efforts, and the results that will arise from them.”

Prof Zeblon Vilakazi, vice-chancellor and principal of Wits University, says that he is confident that Isaac Nape’s appointment will cement Wits’ reputation as a global leader in the field of quantum research. “The work of the talented people in the Wits Structured Light Laboratory has already put Wits University, and indeed, South Africa, in the global spotlight, as far as quantum research is concerned. South Africa should remain at the frontier of this high-level research. In his short career, Dr Nape has already made massive contributions to global quantum research, and his appointment will, without a doubt, add deep value to the future of quantum research in South Africa.”

Contact

Optica

2010 Massachusetts Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States

+1 202 223-8130

Digital tools or software can ease your life as a photonics professional by either helping you with your system design or during the manufacturing process or when purchasing components. Check out our compilation:

Proceed to our dossier

Digital tools or software can ease your life as a photonics professional by either helping you with your system design or during the manufacturing process or when purchasing components. Check out our compilation:

Proceed to our dossier