Michael A. Stecker


Greg Parker, Ph.D.
Professor of Photonics,
University of Southampton
The New Forest
Brockenhurst, Hampshire
United Kingdom


Contact information
Locator Map
Level of accuracy: town of
Brockenhurst, England

I was born in Barking, Essex (U.K.) on 20th April 1954.  On leaving school I joined the Harwell & Culham laboratories where I took an H.N.C. in Applied Physics at Oxford Brookes University (then Oxford Polytechnic). After two years, having gained a taste for study, I went to the University of Sussex to take a degree in Physics Math & Astronomy. In June 1978 I graduated with a First Class Honours Degree and then joined the Philips Research Laboratories in Redhill, Surrey (U.K.).  Concurrently, I enrolled in the doctoral program at the University of Surrey, Guildford (U.K.) where I received the Ph.D. in December 1982 -- my subject being “Characterisation of Deep-Levels in Silicon for Applications in Thermal Imaging”.  A further five years were spent in Industry until 27th April 1987 when I joined the Department of Electronics (as it then was) at the University of Southampton, Hampshire (U.K.). During my years at Southampton I slowly climbed the ranks becoming Professor of Photonics in December, 2000 . My research during this time was in two main areas:
1) Novel growth systems for Silicon compatible materials
2) Silicon-based optoelectronics

I designed, built & developed 4 LPCVD systems for the Microelectronics Group at the University, the latest system being a large 6-chamber cluster-tool. These systems are used for research into novel devices incorporating Si, SiGe, SiGeC and Silicon Nitride. I have published over 110-refereed papers, over a dozen patents and published a textbook on semiconductor physics.

Around 1994
I was investigating the formation of high aspect-ratio single crystal Silicon pillars for their light emission properties. This research included (unintentionally!) the fabrication of a Photonic Crystal as part of the process. Since that time my research has mainly concentrated on Silicon compatible Photonic Crystal structures and their applications.

I live in the New Forest (U.K.) with my wife, son, Celestron Nexstar 11 computer-controlled telescope, and Sony VAIO PCG-C1MHP.

Astronomy Tale
“The most amazing two and a half hours of my life (so far)” was sadly the title of a “Lateral Thoughts” article in the September 2002 issue of Physics World (IOP Publications).  It described the first time I got the Celestron Nexstar 11 GPS scope fired up so that I could automatically go to all those objects I’d only read about before.  I can still recall that night of Thursday 2nd May 2002 as if it were yesterday.  Amazingly, since that time more amazing things have happened – I got a CCD camera and started deep-sky imaging.  Never in my wildest dreams as an 11 year old fascinated by astronomy did I guess that I would be able to take deep-sky images from my own back garden in my lifetime!

Areas of interest
Deep-sky astrophotography

Astrophotography publications
Astronomy Now, The Sky at Night
The Beauty of Deep-Sky Astrophotography
the Patrick Moore Practical Astronomy Series)
Noel Carboni and Greg Parker have just signed a contract with Springer for a large-format coffee-table book of their deep-sky images.  The 12" x 10" book will be called "Star Vistas" and will be available early December 2008 just in time for the Christmas market.
Three month exhibition of my astrophotography in the University of Southampton's exhibition centre beginning mid-July 2006
Starizona picture of the month (September/October 2005)
APOD for January 4th 2007 for a wide field of the Sadr region of Cygnus
Astronomy Picture of the Day [APOD] August 9th 2007 - Wide field M67

Observing site
I observe from a fiberglass dome erected in my garden in Brockenhurst,
Hampshire, U.K.

Astronomical Equipment

Celestron Nexstar 11 GPS SCT
(modified to be able to collimate a Hyperstar f/1.85 lens assembly)
Celestron 80mm refractor guide scope

SXV-H9C colour CCD camera
SXV autoguider

 Head of the Nanoscale Systems Integration Group, and Professor of Photonics at The
University of Southampton, Southampton, U.K.



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