News Briefs

Flexible display contract: Universal Display Corporation (Ewing, NJ), developer of phosphorescent OLED technology, was awarded a $750,000 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II contract from the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory.

Flexible display contract: Universal Display Corporation (Ewing, NJ), developer of phosphorescent OLED technology, was awarded a $750,000 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II contract from the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory. Work under the program, titled “Low-Power, Direct-View Flexible Displays,” will focus on the development of a non-glass, ejection-safe, flexible OLED display prototype for use by pilots. Developed in collaboration with L-3 Communications Display Systems and LG Display, the flexible display prototype will be energy efficient, offer full-color video rate, have wireless communications capabilities, and can be wrapped around a cylinder for easy storage during flight to provide pilots with a replacement for printed maps and checklists typically held on their knees in tactical cockpits.

Laser TV price drops: A source at says the price of Mitsubishi’s laser-based TV sets is coming down. The company’s 65-inch L65A90 LaserVue HDTV sets are now going for $6,499 on Amazon, a $500 discount from the introduction price of around $7,000. The LaserVues were unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January, 2008, and rolled out in the market last fall (see The article says that these TVs have a greater depth of field, clarity and range of colors than comparable LCD and plasma sets.

Bioimaging acquisition: TOPTICA Photonics AG (Munich, Germany) acquired the assets and assumed certain liabilities of TILL Photonics GmbH, an established company in biophotonics focused on live-cell imaging. The consortium that decided to take over TOPTICA’s neighbor TILL

Photonics GmbH from Agilent Technologies is completed by the former founder of TILL, Rainer Uhl, and the TOPTICA VP R&D, Frank Lison. Thomas Weber, President of TOPTICA said, “Notwithstanding the financial link to TOPTICA the new TILL Photonics GmbH will be operated as an independent entity with an independent organization and its own sales channels adapted to the microscopy market.”

Fiber-optic components distribution: Gould Technology (Millersville, MD), developer and manufacturer of fiber-optic products for the communications, test and measurement, medical, gyroscope, and sensor markets, appointed Market Tech (Scotts Valley, CA) as its representative for the western U.S. (AZ, CA, CO, ID, KS, MT, NB, NV, NM, ND, OK, OR, TX, UT, WA, WY) for all products. Gould was a pioneer in fiber-optics technology, commercializing products as early as 1983; it holds numerous patents on fiber-optic components and manufacturing processes.

Microscope zoom patent lawsuit: Aperio Technologies (Vista, CA) filed suit for patent infringement against Olympus America and Hamamatsu alleging that Hamamatsu’s NanoZoomer digital pathology system distributed by Olympus America infringes three U.S. patents issued to Aperio, including 6,917,696 entitled “Fully Automatic Rapid Microscope Slide Scanner” and 7,518,652 entitled “Method and Apparatus for Prefocus in a Linear Array Based Slide Scanner.” Dirk Soenksen, CEO of Aperio, said, “Our ultra-fast line-scanning technology has contributed significantly to the creation and growth of the digital pathology market ... our innovative approaches to image acquisition and processing, including our patented prefocus technology, are poised to unlock a plethora of commercial opportunities. We have an obligation to our shareholders to protect our intellectual property.”

Roll-to-roll display contract: Uni-Pixel (The Woodlands, TX), developer of a color display technology called Time Multiplexed Optical Shutter (TMOS), was awarded a contract by the FlexTech Alliance for further advancement of its Roll to Roll Conductor Patterning Capabilities that it has developed for its Opcuity Active Layer Films. During the course of development of the polymer films used in the company’s TMOS displays, Uni-Pixel has pioneered a method to use an inkjet printing system to pattern conductors on films at significantly thinner trace widths than previously achieved.

Solar expansion capital sought: Advanced Solar Photonics (ASP; Lake Mary, FL), manufacturer of 100% American-component-made monocrystalline solar panels, is launching an investment campaign to raise expansion capital. On June 29, ASP owners authorized the commencement of the next phase of growth of the facility. The acquired capital will be used to implement another 50 MW expansion to its production line located in its Central Florida facility. Having secured the first round of investments, ASPs’ facility is on track to have its first panels come off the line July 15th. The current level of production is limited due to the need for more solar manufacturing equipment and operation capital to move towards full 500 MW production.

Spectroscopy applications lab: BaySpec (Fremont, CA) has formed a Field Sales & Applications Lab to promote its application-specific, integrated optical spectral engine systems for its worldwide customer base. The Lab will complement BaySpec’s existing sales structure--a direct and worldwide distributor network with over 30 country offices, providing a level of hands-on service supporting the technical complexity of its application-specific, turnkey Raman and visible near-IR benchtop and handheld instruments, Fiber Bragg Grating (FBG) interrogation systems for smart structures and other fiber sensing applications, and OCT spectral engines for ophthalmology & and biological in-vivo imaging.

100% LED growth: In his June 25th Opto Insider Blog at or, Tom Hausken points out that most people are not aware that new energy regulations in Europe and the U.S. will progressively ban incandescent lamps from the market, creating a huge market opportunity for LED replacement lamps just as they improve in performance and price. Strategies Unlimited’s new market report anticipates growth rates in this product of over 100% per year for the next several years, thanks to the new regulations, continuing declines in prices, and the unique features that only LEDs provide.

Thermal imaging on the moon: Thermoteknix (Cambridge, England) thermal imaging equipment is traveling to the moon with NASA’s Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) mission to search for the presence of water. LCROSS’s objective is to blast two large impactors into a permanently shadowed crater at one of the Lunar poles to create a plume of material that can be analyzed for the presence of water. NASA selected Thermoteknix’ MIRICLE TB2–30 ultra-ruggedized thermal imaging camera to monitor temperature variations in the blasts within the crater and the resulting plume. MIRICLE is calibrated for temperature measurement in the harshest of environments under the most extreme vibration conditions.

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