Charles K. Kao, William S. Boyle and George E. Smith, three American physicists, shared the 2009 Nobel Prize in physics Tuesday for their contributions to development of fiber-optic cable and digital camera sensors, The Wall Street Journal reported (Subscription required).
Kao discovered how to transmit light signals through thin glass fibers in the mid-1960s. The discovery eventually brought about the creation of modern fiber-optic networks that transmit video, audio and data.
Boyle and Smith invented the digital camera sensor that turns absorbed light into pixels that build digital images. The charge-coupled device (CCD), as it is known, is used in digital devices from simple digital cameras to robotic medical equipment.