Science: Optoelectronics Arrives

A pocket-sized electronic calculator that almost instantaneously flashes answers in bright numbers. A tabletop clock that at the press of a button displays with lighted numerals the hour, minute and second in any of the world's 24 time zones. A transistorized depth-finder that tells the Sunday sailor in glowing red numbers exactly how many feet, or fathoms, of water lie under his keel. These futuristic devices, already on the market, are only samples of the dazzling consumer spin-offs from a totally new scientific field called "optoelectronics"—the marriage of modern optics with space-age electronics.

The journal Physics Today devotes most of its current...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!