News Briefs

Nov. 15, 2009
Arthur Schawlow Award: IPG Photonics Corporation (Oxford, MA), manufacturer of high-power fiber lasers and amplifiers, proudly announced that founder, chairman and CEO Valentin Gapontsev was the recipient of the Laser Institute of America’s (LIA; Orlando, FL) 2009 Arthur L.

Arthur Schawlow Award: IPG Photonics Corporation (Oxford, MA), manufacturer of high-power fiber lasers and amplifiers, proudly announced that founder, chairman and CEO Valentin Gapontsev was the recipient of the Laser Institute of America’s (LIA; Orlando, FL) 2009 Arthur L. Schawlow award. The Schawlow award, which was first presented by the LIA in 1982 and is the LIA’s highest achievement award, honors individuals who have made distinguished contributions to applications of lasers in science, industry, education, or medicine. The award is named for professor Arthur L. Schawlow, who received The Nobel Prize in Physics in 1981 for his contribution to the development of laser spectroscopy.

100,000 IR cameras: FLIR Systems (Tucson, AZ) delivered its 100,000th commercial-use infrared (IR) camera. The thermal imager was sold by FLIR distributor Professional Equipment ( to Bob Childs, owner of Bob the Inspector (Green Valley, AZ).

Childs will also receive his FLIR BCAM SD infrared camera compliments of FLIR Systems ($3,450 value). Tom Scanlon, VP for Americas Thermography, spoke about the milestone: “As our country and our world continue to strive to go green, home inspectors and energy auditors are at the forefront of that monumental effort, evaluating our homes and buildings to ensure they are sound and energy efficient. While FLIR’s earliest thermal imagers cost $50,000, today’s professionals can access FLIR technology for a fraction of that, with cameras now starting at under $2,000.”

Telecom supplier award: Sumitomo Electric awarded JDSU (Milpitas, CA) its Global Contribution Award. Only two suppliers out of fifty received the award. JDSU will serve as the prime supplier of vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser (VCSEL), transmit & receive optical sub-assembly (TOSA and ROSA) products to Sumitomo Electric that are used for datacom, local-area network (LAN) switching, and storage applications. JDSU was selected based on the technical performance of its products, its ability to scale capacity for products based on demand, and assurance of JDSU’s ongoing ability to meet its future needs. The company will use JDSU products in tailored network solutions for the communication and enterprise network markets to help them expand their network bandwidth opportunities.

Green manufacturing in Mexico: Silicon Border (Mexicali, BC, Mexico; announced the completion of its infrastructure targeted for green companies (see also The first phase of the park includes more than 500 acres of developed land with potable water plant and distribution and fiber-optic telephone and data, and is the first Science Park to use LED lighting for 100% of its roadways and parking lots. Silicon Border Science Park is a manufacturing alternative for semiconductor, solar cell, telecommunications, and flat-panel display manufacturers. Under the U.S. Economic Stimulus Act and because of NAFTA, all energy equipment--such as solar panels manufactured in Mexico--qualify under the “Buy American” provision for these governmental incentives.

New 100G project: A new 100 gigabit per second (100G) project has been launched by the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF; Fremont, CA) to define a Module Management Interface. The project, started in the Physical and Link Layer Working Group, has set a goal to develop a Management Data Input/Output Interface (MDIO) for the 100G Long Haul dense-wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) Transmission Module. Work on the 100G Long Haul DWDM Transmission Module Multisource Agreement (MSA) began a year ago and the MDIO interface is an important component to completing the project, enabling multi-vendor interoperability. Documents can be viewed at

Canadian capital: The National Research Council Canadian Photonics Fabrication Centre (NRC-CPFC; Ottawa, ON, Canada) assists clients to develop and commercialize innovative photonics technologies. The Impact Analysis of the Canadian Photonics Fabrication Centre--Final Report ( prepared for the National Research Council Canada by KMPG LLP indicates that NRC-CPFC is providing a highly sought-after and important service to its client firms translating into revenues of about $500 million. Since 2002, the federal government has invested $52 million in NRC-CPFC and the rough estimate of gross commercial value to 12 companies surveyed from 2009 through to 2014 is $500 million. Across Canada, there are approximately 400 photonics companies that employ 20,000 people and generate close to $4.5 billion annually.

HB LEDs conference: Strategies Unlimited (Mountain View, CA) and PennWell Corporation (Tulsa, OK) will host their 11th annual business-oriented conference and exhibition on high-brightness (HB) LEDs and lighting on February 10–12, 2010 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Strategies in Light will include, for the second year, an expanded conference with a separate lighting track for lighting designers, specifiers, architects, and luminaire manufacturers. The focus of this special track, which attracted a standing-room crowd last year, will be to address the many issues associated with the use of LEDs in lighting that are of concern to the lighting community.

Gallium nitride contract: IQE (St. Mellons, U.K.), manufacturer of semiconductor wafers, will sub-contract gallium nitride (GaN) wafer products to TriQuint as part of a $16.2 million DARPA multi-year GaN R&D contract. The program aims to advance GaN research and develop new generations of compound semiconductor circuits through the Nitride Electronic NeXt-Generation Technology (NEXT) program. “NEXT circuits will be ‘game-changing’ technology that could radically improve performance in defence and aerospace applications like phased array radar and communications. NEXT calls for complex digital GaN circuits that also have very high breakdown voltages--something that silicon can’t do, and that is also beyond the scope of today’s other semiconductor processes,” said TriQuint’s principal investigator, senior fellow Paul Saunier.

People in the news: Networking company Infinera (Sunnyvale, CA) named Chris Champion VP of sales, EMEA with responsibility for leading Infinera’s sales activities in the Europe, Middle East, and Africa markets. Champion’s previous experience includes sales, marketing, and business development roles at Corvis Corporation and Nortel Networks.

Dontech (Doylestown, PA) named John Wahl as the company’s new director of engineering. In addition to leading Dontech’s engineering group and product development teams, Wahl will focus on advancing Dontech’s thin-film coating, display bonding, and enhancement product lines. Wahl holds a degree in Industrial Engineering Technology from Southern Illinois University and has an extensive professional background spanning 27 years in optics, displays and display systems.

Spectroscopy company BaySpec (Fremont, CA) appointed Jason Hammock as sales and applications manager. He will focus on regional sales accounts and applications development and drive the company’s visibility throughout the U.S. and beyond. Hammock has more than ten years of experience in the chemical and spectroscopy industries, and previously worked at Ocean Optics and Genentech.

The Optical Society (OSA; Washington, DC) Board of Directors elected Arthur Ashkin as the newest honorary member of the society. Ashkin was chosen for his pioneering work on optical trapping and the development of optical tweezers. Ashkin retired from a distinguished 40-year career at Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs in 1992. Ashkin is the recent author of Optical Trapping and Manipulation of Neutral Particles Using Lasers.

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