Australian and New Zealand
Optical Society    

A new ANZCOP is coming in November 2021!

After missing our annual meeting in 2020, ANZOS is delighted to announce that the Australian and New Zealand Conference on Optics and Photonics (ANZCOP) is back for 2021 running as ANZCOP21 in mixed online/in-person mode on November 18-19, 2021.

Download the complete ANZCOP21 program and book of abstracts.

Please note that registration for ANZCOP21 has now closed.

About the meeting

Purpose of the meeting

ANZCOP 2021 is a special event of the Australian and New Zealand Conference on Optics and Photonics presented on behalf of ANZOS - the Australian and New Zealand Optical Society. ANZCOP21 will focus on ECRs and postgraduate researchers, enabling opportunities for networking, collaboration, and ideas exchange in a hybrid setting -  both online and in-person.

Mode of delivery

We are planning a major meeting on the exciting MeetAnyway online platform with physical hubs in most major cities across Australia and New Zealand. The online platform will allow all participants to interact with community members from across Australia and New Zealand. In-person physical hubs will provide a true conference experience with evening social events.

Scope of the conference

The conference is open to submissions from all areas of contemporary photonics and optics including 

  • lasers and novel light sources
  • nonlinear optics
  • fibre optics, communication systems and microwave photonics
  • optical materials
  • nanophotonics
  • optoacoustics
  • integrated photonics and optical nano- and micro-fabrication
  • metamaterials, metasurfaces and other engineered optical materials
  • optical spectroscopy
  • biophotonics and biomedical photonics
  • laser processing
  • astronomical instrumentation
  • quantum optics
  • modelling and theoretical photonics


The meeting will run from the mid-afternoon of Thursday November 18 (Australian Eastern Standard Time AEST) through to the evening of Friday November 19.

  • Thursday afternoon: plenary session, ANZOS prize announcements and online networking session
  • Thursday evening: hub-based social events
  • Friday daytime: contributed and invited talks in four sessions and a lunchtime poster session
  • Friday evening: online networking session and hub-based social events

Events at each hub will be coordinated by Hub Champions (we are still looking for volunteers in some cities, see below).

Plenary and invited speakers

Plenary address - Prof. Halina Rubinsztein-Dunlop

We are delighted that the Thursday afternoon plenary address will be delivered by the eminent optical physicist Professor Halina Rubinsztein-Dunlop AO FFP of the School of Mathematics and Physics at the University of Queensland. Prof. Rubinsztein-Dunlop is renowned for her many contributions to spectroscopy, nonlinear optics, laser trapping and micromanipulation, quantum chaos and quantum optics. A 2021 SPIE Luminary, she has an accomplished record of service in physics and optics, including as ANZOS Councillor, member of the Board of Directors of SPIE, as Chair of the SPIE Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee. 

Sculpted light – one good turn deserves another  

The way light can apply forces to a nano- or micro-sized object is easily understood as an exchange of  momentum between the light beam and the object. This applies both to linear momentum and to  angular momentum exchange. Methods based on these phenomena promise high flexibility and an  opportunity for trapping and driving these objects or even using them inside a biological cell for  evaluation and better understanding of cellular responses. Optical drive of micron scale devices  promises the ability to carry out measurements and operations on microscopic systems in a flexible  way. The energy that is needed can be transmitted without harm through many materials including a  membrane of a cell. Optical tweezers have been already used in atom optics as well as to measure  mechanical properties of cells and their components, and also for studies of molecular motors. The  stimulation of cells by forces and torques applied to them has allowed studies of cell response and  signal transduction.  

Sculpted light produced using programmable spatial light modulators have significantly enhanced the  configurable optical trapping. These sculpted light beams can be used for optical trapping of Bose Einstein Condensate and their manipulation. They can also provide beams carrying angular  momentum that enables introduction of rotation. Quantitative measurements of this rotation are  possible through a measurement of the change of polarisation state of light after passing through the  object. The transfer of the angular momentum can then be used for several applications in biology and  medicine. Sculpted light can also be used to substantially enhance the trapping efficiency and  therefore increase the applied forces.

Invited speakers

The day two sessions will feature invited presentations from the following four exciting speakers.

 Dr Daria Smirnova 

 Australian National University

Topological photonics with all-dielectric nanostructures

 Dr Daria Smirnova  Dr Miro Erkintalo

 University of Auckland

Spontaneous breaking of polarisation symmetry in nonlinear resonators

Dr Miro Erkintalo 
 Dr Andreas Boes
 RMIT University


Unlocking all-optical processing with lithium thin-film niobate

 Dr Andreas Boes  Dr Jiawen Li
 University of Adelaide

Freeform 3D printed micro-lenses for optical coherence tomography probes

 Dr Jiawen Li

Discussion panel: Your future in optics and photonics


Day one formal events will conclude with a panel discussion on how to explore and sieze opportunities in industry for early and mid-career scientists. The panel will be chaired by optical scientist and entrepreneur Professor Cather Simpson of the University of Auckland. Alongside her academic work, Professor Simpson was the founding director of the Photon Factory and a founder of two spin-off companies, Engender Technologies and Orbis Diagnostics.

We are delighted to welcome the following distinguished speakers to the panel.

Dr Xiaoli Tang 

Optical engineering team leader
Baraja Pty. Ltd

  Dr Steve Frisken

Optical researcher, inventor and  entrepreneur


Dr Maria Maragkou
Senior Business Development Manager, Riverlane

  Dr Matheus J. T. Vargas
Chief Technology Officer 
Orbis Diagnostics


Registration for ANZCOP21 is free for all participants working in optics and photonics within Australia and New Zealand, or for Australian or New Zealand permanent residents working in optics overseas. We also encourage all participants to join as active participants of ANZOS at our membership page. (First year membership is free for all students). 

To manage IT planning, formal registration is required to participate in ANZCOP21. Registration for the meeting has now closed.

Submission of abstracts

ANZCOP21 will consist of a mix of invited (30 mins) and contributed (20 mins) talks and posters. Contributed papers must use this standard 1-page Word template. Submissions are limited to one page with approximately 500 words of main text and at most one figure.

While submissions are welcome from all eligible participants, ANZCOP21 has an explicit agenda to promote the work of early career and postgraduate students and we expect that the majority of oral presentations will be drawn from these groups.

Formal submissions to ANZCOP21 for consideration for talks have now closed and all outcomes have been advised.  

EDI policy and Code of Conduct

ANZCOP21 is governed by the ANZOS Code of Conduct under the ANZOS Policy on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.

The technical committee is required to produce a program of talks and posters consistent with EDI principles.

All registrants, staff and volunteers are required to conduct themselves in a respectful manner at all times both in person and online, and not to engage in any form of harassment. All participants are expected to familiarise themselves with the Code of Conduct before the meeting commences.

Carer support

ANZCOP21 intends to provide support for childcare to allow registrants to engage in both daytime and evening events. This will be in the form of a fixed rate carer allowance.  Further details to follow closer to the conference date.

Persons of contact

The conference organisers will nominate persons of contact for the overall meeting and at each hub who can be approached with any concerns about inappropriate behaviour. These will be listed here closer to the conference date.

Conference Committee

Dr Shahna Haneef
University of Auckland

  Dr Rocio Camacho
Australian National University
Dr Haoran Ren
Macquarie University 

Dr Rohan Glover
University of Adelaide
Amy Van der Hel
University of Queensland

Farhan Azeem
University of Otago

Prof. Igor Aharonovich

University of Technology, Sydney


A/Prof. Frederique Vanholsbeeck
University of Auckland 

Prof. Michael Steel
Macquarie University

Hub champions

IT oversight and social activities at each city node will be overseen by Hub Champions.  We are looking for organisers across all major cities in Australian and New Zealand. Please get in touch if you are interested in supporting ANZCOP21 in one of these roles.

Acknowledgement of First Nations

ANZCOP21 is taking place on the traditional lands of many First Nations peoples across Australia and Aotearoa/New Zealand.
The organisers of ANZCOP21 acknowledge and pay respect to the traditional owners of all the lands on which the conference will take place.

Australia - Acknowledgment of Country

We acknowledge the ancestors past, present and emerging and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people participating in the conference. 
In particular, we acknowledge the following peoples on whose land our gatherings at city hubs will take place :

  • Ngunnawal and Ngambri people - Australian National University, Canberra
  • Gadigal and Guring-gai people of the Eora nation- University of Technology, Sydney; University of Sydney
  • Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation - RMIT University, Melbourne:
  • Wallumedegal people of the Darug nation - Macquarie University, Sydney
  • Kaurna people - University of Adelaide, University of South Australia
  • Whadjuk Noongar people - University of Western Australia
  • Turrbal/Jagera people - University of Queensland
  • Yugarabul, Yuggera, Jagera and Turrbal peoples - Griffith University
  • Turrbal and Yugara people - Queensland University of technology

Aotearoa - New Zealand

  • Ngā Kaitiaki o tēnei whenua e noho nei mātou, Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei – Waipapa Taumata Rau | The University of Auckland 

  • Nei rā ka tai o mihi ki a koutou i raro i te maru o ka rūnaka o Kāti Huirapa ki Puketeraki me Ōtākou. Nau mai, haere mai ki Te Whare Wānaka o Ōtākou  | The University of Otago

Conference sponsorship

The MeetAnyway platform provides an online sponsorship and meeting hub suitable for corporate and university sponsors. ANZCOP21 invites corporate sponsors, Centres of Excellence and other interested research centres to support the conference through a flat rate $500 sponsorship. Please contact the organisers at if you would like to learn more.

All sponsorship proceeds will be directed to supporting social events in hubs and providing parent/carer support for registrants with babysitter or carer support to attend events. Interested parties should contact Prof. Igor Aharonovich.

Conference Contact

For all queries regarding ANZCOP21 please write to
To receive updates regarding the opening of registration and abstract submissions, please send an email with the subject "Subscribe" to

Thanks to our sponsors

The organising committee of ANZCOP21 sincerely thank our sponsors for their generous support of ANZCOP21:

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