Jeffrey M. Gordon 

Born 1949.      B.A. and M.A. Columbia Univ.       Ph.D. Brown Univ. (1976)

Department of Energy and Environmental Physics
Jacob Blaustein Institute for Desert Research
Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Sede Boqer Campus 84990, Israel
and The Department of Mechanical Engineering
Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beersheva 84105, Israel 

Tel: +972-8-659-6923            Fax: +972-8-659-6921 

Last updated: 8/8/2003

Principal Research and Teaching Interests

A) Biomedical optics and biomedical sciences

B) Solar energy and infrared radiation concentration at the thermodynamic limit

C) Maximum-performance illumination/irradiation optical systems

D) The science of cooling systems, from conventional air-conditioners to quantum-mechanical refrigerators

Space does not permit a full description of these projects, and I earnestly invite correspondence. The following recent publications are representative (PDF-format reprints are available upon request):

Solar surgery

J.M. Gordon, D. Feuermann, M. Huliehil, S. Mizrahi and R. Shaco-Levy (2003) "Surgery by sunlight on live animals". Nature 424, 510.

First clinical trials of solar surgery on live animals.  (a) During surgery.  (b) Immediately after solar-generated coagulation and ablation of a prescribed region of the rat's liver.  (c) and (d) Pathology with standard and new enzymatic stains, respectively. The diameter of the roughly hemispherical lesion is 15 mm.

J.M. Gordon, D. Feuermann, M. Huleihil, S. Mizrahi and R. Shaco-Levy (2003), "Solar surgery", Journal of Applied Physics 93, 4843-4851.

J.M. Gordon, D. Feuermann and M. Huleihil (2002), "Laser surgical effects with concentrated solar radiation", Applied Physics Letters 81, 2653-2655.

Solar surgery prototype.  (a) Schematic.  (b) In the field with a 20-meter optical fiber.

D. Feuermann and J.M. Gordon (1998) "Solar surgery: remote fiber-optic irradiation with highly concentrated sunlight in lieu of lasers". Optical Engineering 37, 2760-2767.


More Biomedical Optics 

D. Feuermann and J.M. Gordon (2001) "Gradient index rods as flux concentrators with applications to laser fiber-optic surgery". Optical Engineering 40, 418-425.

J.M. Gordon (2000) "Spherical gradient-index lenses as perfect imaging and maximum power transfer devices". Applied Optics 39, 3825-3832.

J.M. Gordon (1998) "Nonimaging optical designs for laser fiberoptic surgery". Optical Engineering 37, 539-542.

Y. Fang, D. Feuermann and J.M. Gordon (1997) "Maximum-performance fiber optic irradiation with nonimaging designs". Applied Optics 36, 7107-7113.

High-flux solar energy and infrared concentration

D. Feuermann, J.M. Gordon & M. Huleihil (2002) "Solar fiber-optic mini-dish concentrators: first experimental results and field experience", Solar Energy 72, 459-472 (+ Erratum, ibid 73, 73).

D. Feuermann, J.M. Gordon & M. Huleihil (2002) "Light leakage in optical fibers: experimental results, modeling and the consequences for solar concentrators", Solar Energy 72, 195-204.

D. Feuermann and J.M. Gordon (2001) "High-concentration photovoltaic designs based on miniature parabolic dishes", Solar Energy 70, 4230430.

D. Feuermann and J.M. Gordon (1999) "Solar fiber-optic mini-dishes: a new approach to the efficient collection of sunlight". Solar Energy 65, 159-170.

D. Feuermann, J.M. Gordon and H. Ries (1999) "High-flux solar concentration with imaging designs". Solar Energy 65, 83-89.

H. Ries, J.M. Gordon and M. Lasken (1997) "High-flux photovoltaic solar concentrators with kaleidoscope-based optical designs". Solar Energy 60, 11-16.

J.M. Gordon (1996) "A 100-sun linear photovoltaic solar concentrator design from inexpensive commercial components". Solar Energy 57, 301-305.

R.P. Friedman and J.M. Gordon (1996) "New optical designs for ultra-high flux infrared and solar energy collection: monolithic dielectric tailored edge-ray concentrators". Applied Optics 35, 6684-6691.

R.P. Friedman, J.M. Gordon and H. Ries (1996) "Compact high-flux two-stage solar collectors based on tailored edge-ray concentrators". Solar Energy 56, 607-615.

J.M. Gordon (1996) "Simple string construction method for tailored edge-ray concentrators in maximum-flux solar energy collectors". Solar Energy 56, 279-284.


Illumination Optics

Tailoring optical systems to prescribed flux distributions at maximum radiative efficiency. Applications include building lighting, industrial infrared heating, semiconductor processing and fiber optic coupling.

P.T. Ong, J.M. Gordon, A. Rabl and W. Cai (1995) "Tailored edge-ray designs for uniform illumination of distant targets". Optical Engineering 34, 1726-1737.

P.T. Ong, J.M. Gordon and A. Rabl (1995) "Tailoring lighting reflectors to prescribed illuminance distributions: compact partial-involute designs". Applied Optics 34, 7877-7887.

J.M. Gordon and P.T. Ong (1996) "Compact high-efficiency non-imaging back reflector design for filament light sources". Optical Engineering 35, 1775-1778.

P.T. Ong, J.M. Gordon and A. Rabl (1996) "Tailored edge-ray designs for illumination with tubular sources". Applied Optics 35, 4361-4371.

J.M. Gordon and A. Rabl (1998) "Reflectors for uniform far-field irradiance: fundamental limits and example of an axisymmetric solution". Applied Optics 37, 44-47.

D. Feuermann, J.M. Gordon and H. Ries (1998) "Nonimaging optical designs for maximum power density remote irradiation". Applied Optics 37, 1835-1844.

D. Feuermann and J.M. Gordon (1998) "Optical performance of axisymmetric edge-ray concentrators and illuminators". Applied Optics 37, 1905-1912.

Thermodynamics of cooling devices

Readers interested in the engineering and physics of cooling systems are invited to inspect our book, COOL THERMODYNAMICS, by Jeffrey M. Gordon and Kim Choon Ng, at the publishers web page:


a) Simple universal irreversible thermodynamic models of chillers (refrigeration systems and heat pumps) and experimental verification. 

b) New diagnostic and predictive capabilities with non-intrusive procedures. 

c) Applications to reciprocating, centrifugal and absorption chillers. 

d) Innovations in miniaturized cooling devices.

Recent Publications:

J.M. Gordon, K.C. Ng, H.T. Chua and A. Chakraborty (2002) "The electro-adsorption chiller: a miniaturized cooling cycle with applications to micro-electronics". International Journal of Refrigeration 25, 1025-1033. (Also: US and PCT patent pending)

H.T. Chua, K.C. Ng, X.C. Xuan, C. Yap and J.M. Gordon (2002) "Temperature-entropy formulation of thermoelectric thermodynamic cycles". Physical Review E 65, 056111.

B.K. Ahlborn and J.M. Gordon (2000) "The vortex tube as a classic thermodynamic refrigeration cycle". Journal of Applied Physics 88, 3645-3653.

J.M. Gordon, K.C. Ng, H.T. Chua and C.K. Lim (2000) "How varying condenser coolant flow rate affects chiller performance: thermodynamic modeling and experimental confirmation". Applied Thermal Engineering 20, 1149-1159.

J.M. Gordon, K.C. Ng and H.T. Chua (1999) "Simple thermodynamic diagrams for real refrigeration systems". Journal of Applied Physics 85, 641-646.

J.M. Gordon and K.C. Ng (1999) "High efficiency solar cooling". Solar Energy 68, 23-31.

K.C. Ng, H.T. Chua, K. Tu, J.M. Gordon, T. Kashiwagi, A. Akisawa and B.B. Saha (1998) "The role of internal dissipation and process average temperature in chiller performance and diagnostics". Journal of Applied Physics 83, 1831-1836.

K.C. Ng, K. Tu, H.T. Chua, J.M. Gordon, T. Kashiwagi, A. Akisawa and B.B. Saha (1998) "Thermodynamic analysis of absorption chillers: internal dissipation and process average temperature". Applied Thermal Engineering 18, 671-682.


Quantum-mechanical refrigerators

R. Kosloff, E. Geva and J.M. Gordon (2000) "Quantum refrigerators in quest of the absolute zero". Journal of Applied Physics 87, 8093-8097.

J.P. Palao, R. Kosloff and J.M. Gordon (2001) "Quantum thermodynamic cooling cycle", Physical Review E 64, 056130.


Curriculum Development: new undergraduate and graduate courses 

Advanced optical design 

Thermal radiation 

Engineering physics of life forms 

Basic and advanced solar energy engineering 

Statistical thermodynamics for engineers 


Consultation work with high-technology industry in Israel and abroad 

Infrared irradiation optical systems for the semiconductor industry

Commercial luminaires (reflectors for building lighting) with maximum radiative efficiency and extremely uniform illuminance

Stationary solar energy concentrators for hot water, steam and air-conditioning applications

High-performance light boxes for radiology clinics

Light launchers for optical fibers - applications in radiometry, spectroscopy, medical diagnoses and surgery

Illumination designs for automated optical inspection systems of visual displays

Maximum brightness irradiation devices for biomedical applications


Funded Research

The common thread among the programs listed below is solar photonics,i.e., the unique exploitation of the photonic value of sunlight, in applications where the alternative power sources are exorbitant in price and a high density of solar photons offers potentially affordable and pragmatic solutions.

(1) solar surgery (funding from the Altura Foundation of the US);

(2) solar fiber-optic mini-dishes for a variety of solar energy applications (funding from the Israel Ministry of National Infrastructures);

(3) modular photovoltaic power using photovoltaic mini-dishes (in collaboration with our colleagues at Drexel University, funded by the US Department of Energy);  and

(4) solar photonics for nanotechnology (funding from the Altura Foundation of the US).

A preliminary review of some of these programs was published in the March 2001 issue of ReFocus magazine.

A range of inter-disciplinary problems in applied physics, thermal engineering, optical engineering, mechanical engineering and biomedical engineering need to be tackled before such solar photonic commercial systems can be considered. We extend an invitation to interested graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and visiting scientists to join us in these ventures.