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Department of Physics

Staff profile

Professor Gordon Love, B.Sc. Ph.D. F.Inst.P. C. Phys. MBCS

Professor in the Department of Physics
Head of Department of Computer Science in the Department of Computer Science
Head of Department (, Department of Computer Science

(email at


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 ResearchID , ORCID Profile, or Scopus


Conoscopic Image: Lithium Liobate between crossed polarisers

I am the Head of the Department of Computer Science. I took on this role in August 2017 after leading the Group which oversaw the creation of the separate Departments of Engineering and Computer Science - from the old joint School of Engineering and Computing Sciences. 

Recent Roles & Responsibilities

Career Summary

Durham University

  •  Professor 2011 - Present
  •  Reader 2005 - 2011
  •  Senior Lecturer 2004 - 2005
  •  Lecturer 1997 - 2004

University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, & USAF Phillips Laboratory, USA

  • Optical Physicist 1995 - 1997

Raman Research Institute, Bangalore, India:

  •  Royal Society Visiting Fellow 1992 – 1993

Visiting Positions

  •  Epiphany Term 2002: Visiting Position at the Cavendish Astrophysics Group, Cambridge.
  •  Epiphany Term 2007: Visiting Position at UC Berkeley, School of Optometry.
  •  Epiphany Term 2012: Visiting Position at the Medical University of Innsbruck,, Austria



Research Interests

My research involves optics and the physics of light. Much of my work has involved adaptive optics which is a technology used in astronomy to improve the performance of large ground telescopes. The technology, like my research, has diversified and is now used in the biosciences, vision science, and computer graphics.

More generally, I am an applied physicist but I work with colleagues in vision science, computer science, and psychology on problems related to 3D displays, the optics of the eye, and computer graphics.

In Computer Science I work in the Innovative Computer Group. In Physics I work in  the Centre for Advanced Instrumentation.

I have a long standing collaboration with Martin Bank's Group at Berkeley, working on 3D displays, acccommodation, and some interesting work on animal eyes.

Selected External Appointments

  • External Examiner, University of York, Dept. of Physics, 2016-2020 
  • Council Member, Institute of Physics, 2010-2014
  • Conference Chair, Photon14, Imperial College, London, Sept. 2014 
  • Member, STFC IPS (Innovations Partnership Scheme) Panel, 2010-2013
  • External Examiner for Imperial College’s MSc in Optics and Photonics, 2007-2010
  • Chair of the Institute of Physics’ Optical Group, 2007-2010 (previously Treasurer and ordinary member).
  • Member of the Royal Society’s International Fellowship Panel, 2007–2010
  • Member the STFC/Royal Society of Edinburgh Enterprise Fellowships Panel, 2009-2012
  • Board Member of the European Optical Society, 2006-2010
  • Member of the Institute of Physics’ Group Coordination Committee, 2008-2014
  • Steering Committee & Research Board Member of the Faraday Partnership in Smart Optics, 2001– 2005


I have taught a whole range of courses involving optics, astronomy, electronics, image processing and classical mechanics. I have also taught several external courses (including many years contributing to the SIRA Course on Optical Engineering and Imperial College's Short Course on Adaptive Optics).

I have been an external PhD. examiner at Cambridge (x3), Edith Cowan (Australia), Glasgow (x2), Heriot Watt (x2), Imperial (x4), Kent, Nottingham, Oxford (x2), Sheffield, St. Andrews, TU Delft (NL), TU Denmark, UC Dublin, UCL. 

My competed PhD. students (as primary supervisor) are

This is the "Durham Radio Telescope" on the roof of physics built up by a series of 4th year students working with me.


  • I was originally an undergraduate at Van Mildert College
  • I was a College Tutor at St. Cuthbert's Society from 1993 - 1995
  • I was a College Mentor at Hatfield College from 2008 - 2013
  • I am a visiting fellow at St. Chad's College in 2016/17

Stereoscopic MonoVision

The following image of a statue and sundial is an example of some of my recent work on stereoscopic vision - showing how the eye synthesises differentially blurred images to produce a sharp whole. The image is a standard-cross-fused stereo image (view the left image with your right eye and vice versa in order to see a 3D image). You will see that as well as the camera position changing slightly between the two shots (which gives the 3D effect) the camera focus has been changed so that in the left hand image the statue is sharp and the gnomon is blurred, and vice versa. If you are able to cross fuse you will see an image where both appear to be sharp. (See link below to higher resolution image which might be easier to view).

Original Paper Higher Resolution Image  

Research Groups

Department of Physics

  • Centre for Advanced Instrumentation

Centre for Materials Physics

  • Experimental structure and dynamics of biological soft matter

Department of Biosciences

  • Durham Centre for Bioimaging Technology

Department of Computer Science

  • Innovative Computing

Research Interests

  • Vision Science
  • 3D Displays
  • Computer Graphics
  • Adaptive Optics
  • Liquid Crystal Technology
  • Image Processing
  • Optics


Conference Paper

  • Aksit, Kaan, Ng, Ren, Banks, Martin S., Love, Gordon D., Lopes, Ward, Kim, Jonghyun, Spjut, Josef, Patney, Anjul, Shirley, Peter, Luebke, David, Cholewiak, Steven A. & Srinivasan, Pratul (2017), Varifocal virtuality: a novel optical layout for near-eye display, ACM SIGGRAPH 2017 Emerging Technologies on - SIGGRAPH '17. Los Angeles, ACM, New York, 25.

Journal Article

Media Contacts

Available for media contact about:

  • Visualisation / 3D displays:
  • Advanced Instrumentation:
  • Vision / eye movement:

Selected Grants

  • 2015: Telescopic Windows: low vision scope to cloaks (£418041.28 from Epsrc)
  • 2012: Comfortable stereoscopic displays: A pre-commercial prototype (£19983.00 from Epsrc)