NEoteRIC’s coordinator, Prof. José Capmany, has been awarded the national research prize in the engineering area, the most prestigious scientific award in Spain.

José Capmany Francoy, coordinator of the project NEoteRIC and lead researcher of the Photonics Research Labs (PRL), has been awarded the “Leonardo Torres Quevedo” National Research Award of this year (2020) in the area of Engineering, which is the most prestigious scientific award in Spain. The jury has awarded Capmany for his pioneering contribution to the field of Photonic Engineering and for the major international impact of his cutting-edge scientific research in Optical Communications. The jury highlighted the exemplary professional career of the candidate, his leadership skills and his perseverance in developing practical applications of his research.

Professor Capmany considers that this award recognizes the top-level research and technology transfer work that has been carried out by the PRL for the last 25 years. The award, despite being awarded to just one person, would not have come without the work of an excellent team of researchers, whose dedication, effort and professionalism deserve to be emphasized. “For me it is an immense honour and privilege to work and learn from them on a daily basis”, Professor Capmany said. “I want to dedicate this award to all of them and to my family. I thank as well the continuous support received from UPV.”

Regarding José Capmany

Born in Madrid in 1962, José Capmany Francoy is considered one of the worldwide most outstanding experts in the field of optical communications. His work is an international scientific benchmark in the field of microwave photonics, whose applications cover areas such as mobile and space communications or broadband communications. His research has been published in the most prestigious scientific journals in his field, such as Nature Photonics or Nature Communications.

Doctor in Telecommunications Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Madrid and Doctor in Physical Sciences, Capmany has been a professor of Photonics at the Polytechnic University of Valencia since 1996. From 2002 to 2016, he headed the iTEAM Research Institute of this academic institution. He has led more than 70 European, national, regional and internal research projects at UPV, and is a co-founder of the spin-off companies VLC Photonics (, iPronics Programmable Photonics ( and Ephoox ( He has published more than 600 papers in high impact journals and international congresses and five textbooks on photonic devices, optical networks, communications systems and programmable integrated photonics. Furthermore, he is the author of 19 patents.

Among many other academic distinctions, Prof. Capmany was awarded King James I Prize on New Technologies in 2012 and three years later he was recognized with the prestigious Presidential Fellowship for distinguished scientists awarded by the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

In 2017, he received an Advanced Grant from the European Research Council (ERC) to carry out the UMWP-Chip project, in which he is currently working and whose objective is the development of the first photonic integrated chip that enables multiple functionalities by employing a single common architecture. From 2020 Capmany also coordinates NEoteRIC, the first European project in which programmable photonics is used in biomedical applications. This project aims to detect cells with characteristics out of a certain pattern, what will facilitate the detection of cancer cells at an early stage. In addition, he is a Fellow Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and of the Optical Society of America (OSA).

Regarding the National Research Awards

The National Research Awards were created in 1982 by the Ministry of Education and Science to recognize the merit of Spanish researchers who are carrying out an outstanding work in scientific fields of international relevance and for their extraordinary contribution to the scientific progress, a better knowledge of the human being and peaceful coexistence, the transfer of technology and the progress of Humanity.

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