Imaging & Detector Industry Report

March 1, 2000
Photonics West presents sensing technologies; USDC gains two new members; USDC gains two new members; and more.

Photonics West presents sensing technologies

With an official tally of 12,141 attendees, Photonics West 2000 (San Jose, CA; Jan. 22-28, 2000) topped its 1999 attendance figure by nearly a thousand. The show comprised four sections—LASE 2000, Optoelectronics 2000, Electronic Imaging 2000, and BiOS 2000. Technical sessions included the description of a high-speed membrane-mirror spatial light modulator developed by Optron Systems (Bedford, MA). Upward of 500 companies exhibited, with almost 100 firms grouped into a pavilion devoted to electronic imaging. New light detectors were shown by Hamamatsu (Bridgewater, NJ), as well as by Pacific Silicon Sensor (Westlake village, CA), which developed a flip-chip photodiode containing both contacts on the same face. Imaging products introduced at the show included those by Sony (Tokyo, Japan), Dalsa (Waterloo, Ontario, Canada), and Coreco (St.-Laurent, Quebec, Canada).

USDC gains two new members

Eastman Kodak (Rochester, NY) and DuPont (Wilmington, DE) have joined the US Display Consortium (USDC; San Jose, CA), bringing the organization's membership to 16 companies. Kodak has pioneered organic light-emitting-diode technology to be used in flat-panel displays, while DuPont's expertise in polymer films and other materials helps to make displays lighter in weight and easier and less expensive to manufacture. DuPont also makes holographic materials that can be incorporated into displays—for example, the electrically switchable holographic laser projector being developed by DigiLens (Sunnyvale, CA). Both Kodak and DuPont have extensive experience in roll-to-roll polymer manufacturing processes. "The projects we have embarked upon to develop flexible displays will now receive a strong boost because of [Kodak's and DuPont's] active participation," says Michael Ciesinski, USDC president. Such displays will be incorporated into signs and mobile phones, as well as personal computers and their successors.

Ion Optics gets money for IR sensor development

Ion Optics (Waltham, MA) has won a Small Business Innovation Research award from the US Department of Transportation to develop a portable sensor for monitoring internal-combustion exhaust emissions. Based on a modified hand-held infrared spectrometer, the sensor will be used for shipboard or dockside monitoring of marine vessels using diesel or alternative fuels. The spectrometer—which includes active optical components micromachined directly onto a waveguide—will measure NOX, SOX, CO, CO2, and hydrocarbon emissions by monitoring the 3-5.5-µm and 7-14-µm wavelength bands. Ion Optics will also develop data-reduction algorithms that will produce absolute species-concentration measurements.

DRS finds support from US Army and Navy

DRS Technologies (Parsippany, NJ) has received contracts totaling $12.6 million from the US Army to provide thermal imaging systems for the Abrams and Bradley tanks. The systems produce Tv-quality images and allow ground vehicles to find and identify tactical targets. The contracts are the result of the exercise of options on an existing multiyear contract with a total of $124.4 million. Deliveries for these options will continue through January 2001. In addition, DRS Technologies was awarded a $1.1 million contract from the US Navy to develop a three-band IR focal-plane-array detector. The device's multiband capability will provide increased discrimination between threats, decoys, and background debris.

Also in the news . . .

Scitex (Herzlia, Israel) has completed commercial development of a 6.6-Mpixel full-sized 35-mm CMOS sensor intended for professional digital photography. . . . E Ink Corp. (Cambridge, MA) received $37 million in its second round of equity financing and has entered into a development partnership with Lucent Technologies (Murray Hill, NJ). . . . FED Corp. (Hopewell Junction, NY) has changed its name to eMagin Corp. . . . Kurt J. Lesker Co. (Clairton, PA) was awarded a contract valued at $354,000 by the USDC to develop an advanced linear organic-materials-deposition process for manufacturing OLEDs; each organization has a 50% stake.

John Wallace

For more business news, subscribe to Optoelectronics Report. Contact Jayne Sears-Renfer at [email protected].

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