Innovation is fostered in three ways:

  1. Solid education as springbed of ideas.
  2. Practical implementation of ideas into novel optical technologies.
  3. Exploitation of technologies through application in science or spinout into commercial products.

While the last step is the business of the SAOT industrial partners, all intermediate steps are part of the SAOT activities and in which also the Doctoral Candidates are involved all along the way. To kindle innovations, SAOT runs DCs “innovation competitions” soliciting short proposals for “blue sky research ideas”. The best ideas will be awarded 20,000 Euros  (SAOT Innovation Award) once a year enable feasibility research.