Optalysys Appoints Scientific Advisory Board for Optical Computing

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Today Optalysys announced the formation of its first Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) comprising experts in AI/machine learning, bioinformatics/genomics and optical pattern recognition. The inaugural SAB members include Professor Douglas Kell of The University of Manchester, Professor Timothy Wilkinson of University of Cambridge and ex-senior NASA scientist, Dr. Richard Juday.

Collectively, these experts have deep knowledge in areas most critical to our long-term success,” said Dr. Nick New, founder and director, Optalysys. “We’re excited to work closely with them through the process of bringing to market our unique optical approach to super-fast, low-power computing to enable more tech innovators and scientists to create a better world.”

SAB members will serve as strategic and scientific advisors as Optalysys commercializes its patented optical co-processing technology that delivers sophisticated pattern recognition and convolution-based processes for deep-learning applications. Complementary to conventional computer hardware, Optalysys’s technology is designed to spur advancements in the Internet of Things (IoT) (e.g., self-driving cars) and edge computing, genomics, medical imaging, weather forecasting and similar industries looking to improve the quality of life and commerce around the globe.

From left, Optalysys Scientific Board members Douglas Kell, Tom Wilkinson, and Dr. Richard Juday.

Douglas Kell, D.Phil., research professor of Bioanalytical Science, The University of Manchester. Dr. Kell is a pioneer of the use of artificial neural networks to solve biological problems. He was involved in research to create a Robot Scientist (“Adam”). While researching yeast-based functional genomics, Adam became the world’s first machine to discover new scientific knowledge independently of its human creators. Dr. Kell has received numerous awards, such as the Fleming Award of the Society for General Microbiology (1986); Royal Society of Chemistry Interdisciplinary Science Award (2004); FEBS-IUBMB Theodor Bücher prize, Royal Society/Wolfson Merit Award and Royal Society of Chemistry Award in Chemical Biology (all awarded in 2005); Royal Society of Chemistry/ Society of Analytical Chemistry Gold Medal (2006); and Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE) (2014). He served as a member (2000-2006) and as chief executive (2008-2013) of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research (BBSRC) Council. The BBSRC Council is a U.K. research council, and the largest U.K. public funder of non-medical bioscience. He holds a doctorate from St. John’s College, Oxford, and has published over 400 scientific papers, 56 of which have been cited over 100 times.

Timothy Wilkinson, Ph.D., professor of Photonic Engineering, University of Cambridge. Professor Wilkinson is a leading expert in freespace optics, devices and systems. He developed the binary phase-only matched filter (BPOMF) and 1/f joint transform correlators, and holds several patents. He is currently working on next-generation liquid crystal devices suitable for 3D holographic displays. He holds a doctorate from Magdalene College, University of Cambridge, and has authored over 200 refereed journal papers.

Dr. Richard Juday, retired NASA scientist. Dr. Juday set up and managed the Hybrid Vision Laboratory in the Automation and Robotics Division at NASA’s Johnson Space Center, Houston, Texas, for conducting research in digitally implemented vision and applications to human low-vision difficulties. He is an expert in the development of spatial light modulators and pattern recognition algorithms for optical correlation, and he holds nine U.S. patents. Dr. Juday has published more than 100 publications including co-authorship of a Cambridge University Press book, Correlation Pattern Recognition. He is a Fellow member of SPIE and OSA, two international professional societies for optics and photonics. His other notable work includes a NASA-funded project to explore the principles of future space travel technology using White-Juday warp field interferometers. He holds a doctorate in electrical engineering from Texas A&M University.

I’m keen on joining the efforts to ensure success for Optalysys’s powerful, environmentally responsible approach to the processing infrastructure necessary to move AI and machine learning to their next levels,” said Professor Kell. “This company and its technology are coming to market at an ideal time to make a big difference to a disruptive technology, and I’m looking forward to doing my part to helping make this happen.”

In this RichReport slidecast, Dr. Nick New from Optalysys describes how the company’s optical processing technology delivers accelerated performance for FFTs and Bioinformatics.

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