Light Road by Attila Csáji | Art Hall

International Year of Light in Hungary

August 5, 2015

Hungary has joined the worldwide 2015 initiative 'International Year of Light'. The programs of the international project are centered around four topics in this country: the science of light; light technology; light in nature; and light and culture.

2015 has been declared by the UNESCO the International Year of Light and Light-Based Technologies at the initiative of a large consortium of scientific bodies together with UNESCO, and will bring together many different stakeholders including scientific societies and unions, educational institutions, technology platforms, non-profit organizations and private sector partners.

In proclaiming an
International Year focusing on the topic of light science and its applications,
the United Nations has recognized the importance of raising global awareness
about how light-based technologies promote sustainable development and provide
solutions to global challenges in energy, education, agriculture and health. A
UNESCO statement says “light plays a vital role in our daily lives and is an
imperative cross-cutting discipline of science in the 21st century. It has
revolutionized medicine, opened up international communication via the
Internet, and continues to be central to linking cultural, economic and
political aspects of the global society.”

Hungarian participation is
coordinated by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (MTA), where a program
committee has been set up, led by former MTA General Secretary Professor Norbert Kroó who has been a
MTA member (since 1972), President from 1993 to 1995 of the European Physical
Society and was one of the initiators of the Year of Light. Professor Kroó
stresses that the program committee’s goal is to draw the attention of the
Hungarian public to the pivotal role of light in sciences, education,
technology, arts, and all areas of life by organizing a wide range of events. As
he put it at the launch of the series of events, the main pillars of
celebrating this international initiative in Hungary are science, education,
industry, arts and international relations. Of the programs, he highlighted the
nationwide tour and lectures by the ‘Bus of Multicolored Physics’, a light
symposium at the opening of the exhibition ‘Light Road’ (open from March 7) by
Attila Csáji in the Art Hall in Budapest, a conference with public lectures at
the headquarters of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences on June 9 and the World
Science Forum that will be held again in the Hungarian capital this November (4-7)
and that will feature a special symposium on light.

Major scientific anniversaries celebrated
in 2015:

Ibn Al-Haytham's works on optics (1015);

notion of light as a wave (Fresnel, 1815);

electromagnetic theory of light
propagation (Maxwell, 1865);

Einstein's theory of the photoelectric
effect (1905) and of the embedding of light in cosmology through general
relativity (1915);

discovery of the cosmic microwave
background by Penzias and Wilson (1965);

Charles Kao's achievements concerning the
transmission of light in fibres for optical communication (1965).


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