It aims to create a pool of talent which can propel the local manufacturing sector into this new technology sector particularly in aspects of Optical Design, Manufacturing and Assembly and Testing and Metrology. A basic degree in Mechanical Engineering provides a strong background in design, manufacturing and testing that lays the foundation for an innovative and problem solving optical engineer. Three broad groupings thus form the basis of this research and each will be driven by a leading professor in the field. The three areas are Computational Optical Design and Simulation, Optical Metrology and Instrumentation and Laser Structuring and Processing. Indeed the synergy of this research groups is best exemplified by the recent CRP project proposal to the NRF on Nano-scale Optical Engineering – sub-50 nm technology and beyond.