Dear supporters of the International Day of Light,

We are excited to share a variety of new materials and updates with you to facilitate your engagement with the 2020 International Day of Light celebrations over the coming days. Remember to use #IDL2020 and #SEETHELIGHT on social media and to connect with the IDL social media channels on Twitter (@IDLOfficial), Facebook (@DayOfLight2020) and Instagram (@IDL2020) where we will be featuring various updates and events taking place worldwide. Please contact us if you have any questions.
The International Day of Light Secretariat

Release of the 2020 International Day of Light #SEETHELIGHT Video

We welcome you to enjoy and share the new 2020 International Day of Light Video, created by the Optical Society (OSA), SPIE and the IEEE Photonics Society with support from the IDL Steering Committee. This video message addresses how light science and technology can provide efficient solutions to current global challenges.

New #SEETHELIGHT Materials

#SEETHELIGHT is a worldwide message encouraging all to join the conversation and celebrate the importance of the science of light and light-based technologies in our lives. As part of this campaign, we are excited to include four new articles that we encourage you to share throughout your networks and community:

Better Diagnostics & Treatments
By Jürgen Popp and Ute Neugebauer, Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology e.V. Jena, Germany
​Find hope in the research into light-based solutions for infectious diseases such as COVID-19.
Read more

Cleaner Energy
By Donna Strickland, University of Waterloo, Canada
Discover how light is expanding clean energy access with solar technologies, lighting the world with efficient LEDs and monitoring the health of our planet with laser light.
Read more

Sustainable ​Farming
By Cather Simpson, University of Auckland, New Zealand
Explore the power of photonics, how light is used to monitor crop health and how lasers are used in cattle farming.
Read more

High Speed Connectivity
Imrana Ashraf, Quaid-i-Azam University, Pakistan
Learn about the opportunities that optical fiber and light-based technologies bring to our ability to connect and its impact on education in the developing world.
Read more

Visuals and Animations for Social Media

We welcome you to use the following visuals that have been developed for use on social media (remember to use #IDL2020 and #SEETHELIGHT):

Animations for #SEETHELIGHT Articles
We encourage you to share the four articles above with the respective special animations that have been developed.

IDL Logo Animations
A variety of IDL logo animations have been created for you to use when promoting your activities around the International Day of Light.

IDL2020 Press Release

Celebrating the Impact of Light Science on Medical Treatment, the Internet, Food Security, and Sustainability

During a time when access to information and connectivity is more important than ever, light science and technology is providing efficient and affordable solutions to current global challenges. On 16 May, individuals worldwide celebrate the International Day of Light and the light-based technologies that drive cleaner energy, sustainable farming, high-speed connectivity, and better diagnostics and treatments.

Read the full release here.


Although many activities that have been planned for the International Day of Light 2020 on May 16 will no longer be able to take place as scheduled, there is no reason we can’t celebrate virtually. In these challenging times, let’s come together to share the role of light in our lives! We are excited to announce two new initiatives for IDL2020:​

Share How you Celebrate Light on Social Media

Let’s build some momentum and excitement for the annual International Day of Light on May 16th. We invite our network to post on social media using #IDL2020 and #SeeTheLight with images that capture how light influences our lives in the broadest sense. Some ideas include sharing a picture of: ​
  • how the science or technology of light improves our lives

  • a natural phenomenon related to light or colour

  • how light is used in art or culture

  • yourself working with or just enjoying light in some way

  • your photonics laboratory experiment

  • your favorite book about light

  • your favorite astronomical object or astrophotography (if you are an astronomer)

  • how you use optics in education

Call for Videos for the International Day of Light

We encourage you to submit a video that showcases how you study, celebrate and/or enjoy light. The International Day of Light Secretariat will select videos to be shared on the official IDL social media pages on 16 May. Videos must be no longer than 1 minute and be submitted through this form by 15 May. Some ideas for video submissions include:​

  • explain and/or demonstrate your photonics or light-related research (including students)

  • how do you use and enjoy light while you stay/work at home?

  • show us your favorite light-based technology

  • create an astrophotography time-lapse or presentation, or explain how you conduct astrophotography in your region

  • explain the importance and value of dark skies

  • find a laser in your home

  • how do you use and celebrate light in your culture?

The complete rules and guidelines are provided on the video submission form

​Please contact us if there are any questions.

IDL Events and Activities Worldwide

To date, activities are registered in more than 60 countries worldwide for the 2020 International Day of Light. We welcome you to register your event or activity that celebrates the role of light in our daily lives, whether it takes place around May 16th or at another time in 2020.

You can browse the global events list here. A special page featuring online and virtual activities has also been created and can be explored here.

Please contact Bethany Downer of the International Day of Light Secretariat to update your event information (such as dates or event description) on the IDL Events page or to promote your activities on IDL social media (please provide a short summary description and an accompanying image or visual).

This artwork was created for the "Science of Light through Art" poster competition by female secondary school students in Pakistan.

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International Day of Light Secretariat · Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics ICTP · Str. Costiera 11 · Trieste, TS 34151 · Italy

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