News Briefs

Fiber laser patent: Mobius Photonics (Santa Clara, CA), manufacturer of visible and ultraviolet fiber-based laser sources, was awarded U.S. Patent #7,443,903, “Laser Apparatus Having Multiple Synchronous Amplifiers Tied to One Master Oscillator”.

Fiber laser patent: Mobius Photonics (Santa Clara, CA), manufacturer of visible and ultraviolet fiber-based laser sources, was awarded U.S. Patent #7,443,903, “Laser Apparatus Having Multiple Synchronous Amplifiers Tied to One Master Oscillator”. The architecture offers a unique way to scale up average power for integration into high-throughput machine tools without sacrificing reliability. Conventional diode-pumped, solid-state lasers are incapable of the flexibility and scalability of the fiber-based architecture embodied in this patent. For customers in cost-sensitive applications, such as solar-cell processing or PCB and display manufacturing, Mobius says the approach enables high throughput with competitive cost of ownership.

Colorado photonics directory: The Colorado Photonics Industry Association (CPIA; released its 10th Anniversary edition of the Colorado Photonics Industry Directory and Analysis. The CPIA has produced a complete listing of the industry biannually since its inception in 1997. The CU Leeds School of Business Research Division again completed the analysis of the industry. Gary Horvath, managing director, notes that the industry continues to enable a wide range of other industries, with aerospace, defense, energy, electronics, and biotechnology devices leading the list. “What’s interesting is that there have been quite a number of mergers and acquisitions during the past two years,” says Horvath, “Anecdotal evidence suggests that corporations purchasing local companies are choosing to keep their acquisitions based in Colorado. That’s quite a change from the past.”

Industrial laser partnership: Laser welding company Scansonic (Berlin, Germany) and laser process monitoring company Precitec (Gaggenau, Germany) have jointly developed an optimized product combining modular components and tactile seam tracking technology with process monitoring for laser brazing and welding. Scansonic will market and support Precitec products in Russia and other Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries, where Scansonic has been active for several years, and Precitec will sell and support Scansonic’s products in Korea, North America, and parts of China. These geographies are home to some of the biggest producers of automobiles in the world, and they are rapidly catching up with the modern laser manufacturing technologies first implemented in Germany.

Live 100GbE: Global Access Limited (GAL; Tokyo, Japan) and Infinera (Sunnyvale, CA) successfully concluded Japan’s first 100 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) demonstration involving 100 GbE traffic sent over a live network between Tokyo and Osaka, a round trip of about 1200 km. The demonstration showed that GAL’s existing network based on the Infinera Digital Optical Networking system can carry 100 GbE traffic using Infinera’s Bandwidth Virtualization paradigm. “Successful completion of this 100 GbE demo is an important milestone for us as we evaluate technologies and services for the future since our customers’ bandwidth needs are increasing and GAL is willing to lead the market in offering the most advanced services with the greatest speed, reliability, and security,” said Koichi Katagiri, deputy managing director, GAL Engineering Division.

Display award and agreement: UniPixel’s (The Woodlands, TX) color display technology called time multiplexed optical shutter (TMOS) was awarded the “Best Electronic Design 2008” in the Best Optical Shutter Technology category by Electronic Design Magazine. In addition, UniPixel will collaborate on its thin-film products with a large Japanese manufacturing company. Specifically, UniPixel will work closely with this firm on the high-volume production requirements of UniPixel’s Opcuity film designs, including its Finger Print Resistant (FPR) films for touch screens followed by Active Layer films for TMOS.

Solar cell award: Kopin (Taunton, MA) was selected for a $600,000 NASA contract to produce nanostructured solar cells. “The material structures used in conventional solar cell designs significantly limit their power conversion efficiency and performance, requiring a trade-off between current and voltage,” said Roger E. Welser, Kopin’s director of new product development. “We are employing a proprietary, patent-pending structure incorporating InGaP barriers, the same material used in our HBT (heterojunction bipolar transistor) wafers for billions of cell phones. In the Phase I program, Kopin produced several InGaP-based test structures that demonstrated a significant increase in the open-circuit voltage without any degradation in current. In this follow-up Phase II program, we aim to further enhance performance while maintaining our long-term objective to produce high-efficiency photovoltaic cells with low cost and good stability.”

LED conference: Strategies Unlimited (Mountain View, CA) and PennWell Corporation (Tulsa, OK) will host its 10th annual business-oriented conference and exhibition on high-brightness LEDs on February 18–20, 2009 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA called Strategies in Light. For this 10th anniversary, the scope of the conference is expanding through a separate lighting track to meet the information needs of lighting designers, specifiers, and architects. The focus of this special track will be to address the many issues associated with the use of LEDs in lighting that are of concern to the lighting community. In conjunction with the lighting track, the conference will offer two new tutorials on LEDs on fundamentals for lighting designers and architects, and on specifying LED lighting fixtures.

Japanese DPSS laser facility: Powerlase (Crawley, England), manufacturers of nanosecond Q-switched, diode-pumped solid state (DPSS) lasers, announced the opening of an office in Japan, headed by newly appointed Takanori Uematsu. The new facility is the third fully-owned international operation to be opened by Powerlase, following operations in the U.K. and Korea. Rapidly expanding markets, including photovoltaic solar cell and active-matrix organic light emitting diode displays, have made opening a local office in Japan an attractive prospect for the company. Uematsu will be responsible for business development at Powerlase, where he will support Powerlase’s growing profile in Japan and encourage expansion into new markets within Asia.

People in the news: The Optical Society of America (OSA; Washington, DC) congratulated Steve Chu, OSA honorary member and award winner, for his nomination to secretary of energy by President-elect Barack Obama. Chu is director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley, CA), and has been a member of OSA since 1984. Chu was elected to honorary member status in 2003. “OSA is thrilled to congratulate one of its own on this prestigious nomination,” said OSA executive director Elizabeth Rogan. “Steve is a true visionary in the field of optics and is a clear leader in alternative energy. With a strong background in science and energy issues and his leadership role at Berkeley Lab, he will serve his country well as energy secretary.”

The OSA Board of Directors also selected two new honorary members of the society. Roy J. Glauber and Theodor Wolfgang Haensch were chosen for their extraordinary contributions to the field of optics. Honorary membership is the highest membership honor given by OSA.

Navitar (Rochester, NY), designer and manufacturer of precision optics and optomechanical assemblies for the machine vision and digital projection industries, appointed Patrick Buvé as regional sales manager for Europe, Middle East, and Africa. Buvé will be based in Belgium and will oversee Navitar staff in Germany and the U.K. He joins Navitar with over 15 years of experience in the machine vision industry and prior to joining Navitar was the European sales manager for CCS Europe NV, where he managed multiple sales channels consisting of OEM, machine vision partners and distributors.

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