The profile of the Polish foundry engineer in the Industry 4.0 age is presented in the present paper. The presented results were obtained by means of three research methods consisting of: analyses of professional expertise documents, questionnaires filled-up by the executive staff of foundry enterprises and analyses of work offers for the foundry engineer position. The investigations indicated the key competences of the foundry engineer, demanded currently by employers and meeting the requirements of the Polish foundry sector. The obtained results were discussed in relation to the fourth industrial revolution and its requirements with regard to the engineering staff. This concept is based on information technology and robotizing, which means the total automation of industrial production processes as well as the widespread access to data and machines. Such an approach requires changes in applied machines, technologies and employees’ competencies. The competences of employees constitute the element deciding on the company success, aimed at obtaining a competitive advantage. Therefore adjusting the employees’ competencies to continuously changing reality is so essential.
In this paper the overview of the recent study on the rare-earth activated waveguides performed in the Optoelectronic Department of IMiO is presented. We reported on the development of rare earth-doped fluorozirconate (ZBLAN) glass fibers that allow a construction of a new family of visible and ultraviolet fiber lasers pumped by upconversion. Especially the performance of holmium devices is presented. The properties of laser planar waveguides obtained by the LPE process and the growth conditions of rare earths doped YAG layers are presented. In this paper we present also the theoretical study of the nonlinear operation of planar waveguide laser, as an example the microdisk Nd:YAG structure is discussed. We derived an approximate formula which relates the small signal gain in the Nd:YAG active medium and the laser characteristics, obtained for whispering-gallery modes and radial modes, to the output power and real parameters of the laser structure