Optoelectronics, or “photonics” as it is increasingly becoming known, is one of the fastest-growing areas of new technology in the world. It has been identified by government foresight groups and other organisations worldwide as one of the key technologies of the 21st century. It has been said that photonics will be to this century what electronics was to the last. The name photonics derives from its close association with electronics, except that increasingly the electrons in electronic circuits are being replaced by the photons of photonic circuits.

Areas of study

Students entering this programme should have a good background in Physics and Mathematics. The specialisation involves a solid grounding in these subjects with extensive specialist training in photonic and electronic engineering, advanced physics and mathematical electronics in subsequent years. To avoid undue specialisation, and in response to feedback from employers, the programme also involves courses in computer science and the management of technology. Your final year of your BTech may incorporate an industry-related project.

You can study Optoelectronics in the following programmes:

What you will learn

You will learn about the technology associated with the manipulation, transmission and storage of data by optical means, and the many other applications of laser technology. Photonics is one of the main driving forces for new wealth generation from the knowledge economy, since it is an indispensable building block of modern ICT systems.

Career opportunities

In New Zealand there is growing demand for staff with an understanding of optics as well as electronics. Increasingly, manufacturers, service providers, telecommunications workers and computer science staff are finding that the equipment which they have to service or develop contains optical or optoelectronic components as well as traditional electronics. There is a growing demand in all developed nations for staff with an understanding of this technology. At The University of Auckland, the Optoelectronics programme has been designed with particular input from the local industries most likely to recruit optoelectronics graduates.

More information

For more information see Optoelectronics.