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Research in Photonic Crystals worth it?

  1. May 8, 2014 #1
    Hi

    I am doing my Masters by research in Photonic Crystals and I want to do a PhD later as I dream of an academic. I wanted to know to if the field of photonic crystals offers opportunities for growth in the future. Will this field be actively researched in the future?

    Thanks
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 8, 2014 #2

    Vanadium 50

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    As Bohr said, "It is difficult to predict, especially the future."
     
  4. May 8, 2014 #3

    Choppy

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    The thing is, if you're doing a master's degree in the subject, you're likely in a better position to answer that than those outside of the field.
     
  5. May 8, 2014 #4

    Thank you. That is a thought provoking quote.
     
  6. May 8, 2014 #5

    Thank you for the reply. I was in a dilemma after one of the senior researchers advised me to abandon PhCs in lieu of materials, graphene, etc
     
  7. May 8, 2014 #6

    Choppy

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    So then the question is what were his reasons for advising you in such a manner? Was he warning you against studying photonic crystals, or does he forsee something more lucrative in the materials research?

    It's generally a good idea to talk with the senior researchers in your group and in most cases you can give some weight to their opinions. But it's always a good idea to understand the "why" behind the advice, rather than just accepting the advice because of this person's position. (Perhaps that's the reason you posted the question here in the first place.)
     
  8. May 8, 2014 #7
    Thank you. The reason she asked me to do so was that the funding for research in photonic crystals has been decreasing steadily. She asked me to go where the funding is! She also mentioned that until few years ago there was a lot of research into PhCs but it not the case now.
     
  9. May 9, 2014 #8

    f95toli

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    But that happens to ALL subjects. Photonic crystals were "hot" a few years ago and hence recieved what could perhaps be described as an disproportionate amount of funding. After a few years all the low hanging fruits (i.e. the "easy" experiments etc) are gone and the people in the field themselves in the same situation as all other researchers in more mature fields.

    The current "hot topic" is graphene but research in that are is also slowing down (or at least maturing) and focus is perhaps shifting towards other 2D materials. In two years something else will be "hot" and so on.

    Hence, choosing a field because of the amount of funding might be a good idea in the short term, but might backfire if you end up with a PhD in a subject that people have lost interest in by the time you finish (which happens). Or, alternatively, you end up with a PhD in subject where there will effectivly be a surplus of people (as is likely to happen with graphene in 2-3 years)

    Photonic crystals have been around for a quite a long time, and although the funding might be decreasing I doubt they are in a worse situation than any other mature field.
     
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