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NMSU engineering professor earns prestigious engineering title

Michael Giles, a professor of computer and electrical engineering at New Mexico State University, has been elected a Fellow of the International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE), an organization dedicated to advancing scientific research and optical engineering applications. He will be honored at the annual SPIE meeting Aug. 3 in San Diego.

NMSU engineering professor Michael Giles has been elected SPIE Fellow.

as elected a Fellow for his outstanding achievement in optics, the study of light. Since 1982, Giles has expanded optics education at NMSU from two survey classes in the Klipsch School of Electrical and Computer Engineering to a full optics program that has graduated 10 Ph.D. students, 66 graduate students and more than 160 undergraduates.

Currently, he is involved in research that deals with adaptive optics, a science that compensates distortion due to the Earth's atmosphere, improving the quality or clarity of images. With more clarity, astronomers are able to view space from Earth more accurately, and national defense programs will be able to find and destroy launched enemy missiles before they can do any damage.

To be elected as an SPIE Fellow, Giles had to be nominated by an active SPIE Fellow and the nomination was reviewed by a committee.

"It's a great honor," Giles said. "This was not something that I sought - they came to me, and I have great respect for the other Fellows."

Giles was nominated by James Harvey, an electro-optics professor at the University of Central Florida and an active SPIE fellow. Giles has known Harvey for more than 30 years; both earned their doctorates from the University of Arizona and defended their dissertations the same day.