News Briefs

R2R manufacturing

The U.S. Display Consortium (USDC; San Jose, CA) signed a new $1.96 million R&D contract with GE Global Research (Niskayuna, NY) to transfer GE’s graded barrier technology from a batch process to a roll-to-roll (R2R) process. Under its first USDC contract, GE Global Research developed a high-temperature LEXAN plastic substrate film and transparent coating system that provides a high-resistance permeation barrier to oxygen, moisture, and chemicals for flexible organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays and backplane microelectronics.

According to GE, that project met its technical objectives for substrates produced in a batch-style processing operation. To enable lower cost, highly functional electronic devices that are area-scalable and mechanically flexible, however, GE notes that it is crucial to develop viable R2R process methods and equipment that are capable of manufacturing coated plastic substrates in large quantity. GE intends to demonstrate compatibility of its substrate system with the economic and functional needs of the OLED display industry.

Production partners

Photop Technologies (Fuzhou, China) and Pavilion Integration Corporation (PIC; Fremont, CA) signed a co-development and joint manufacturing agreement targeting red, green, and blue lasers for the biotech, graphics, and metrology markets. PIC will focus on new laser designs, product development, and global marketing and customer support for the biotech and medical instrumentation market. Photop will leverage its photonics manufacturing platform to consistently manufacture laser products in cost effective ways.

Wristband displays

Universal Display Corporation (Ewing, NJ) was awarded a two-year, $1.7 million SBIR (small business innovation research) Phase III contract by the U.S. Department of Defense to continue its development of flexible OLED-display technology for a next-generation military communications device. In the new contract, Universal Display is to develop and deliver functional prototypes of a portable, flexible communication display device that will be form-fitted to a soldier’s wrist and communicate wirelessly to a nearby computer, enabling soldiers to see crucial video and graphics information in real time. According to the company, the device will use a full-color active-matrix OLED display built on metal foil, which could lead to a rollable, retractable and rugged display with a small and lightweight form factor for use in portable communication devices.

New president

Vitex Systems (San Jose, CA), a provider of encapsulation films used in the production of organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays and organic semiconductor applications, promoted James Marshall, COO, to president and COO. Marshall assumes the president role, formerly held by Malcolm Thompson, who will remain with the company as CEO. In addition, the company has tapped Toshiba-Matsushita veteran Hideo Hirayama to serve as director of technical operations for its wholly owned subsidiary in Japan, Vitex Systems KK.

UK subsidiary

Cedip Infrared Systems (Croissy-Beaubourg, France), specialists in thermal IR camera systems, has opened a new subsidiary company, Cedip Infrared Systems Ltd., to increase support to and further develop its growing base of customers in the UK. The new company has chosen Nottingham in the center of the UK Midlands region to locate its offices.

Done deal

Fabrinet (San Francisco, CA), an engineering and electromechanical manufacturing services company, closed its acquisition of three JDS Uniphase manufacturing sites in Mountain Lakes and Ewing, NJ and Fuzhou, China. According to the company, the acquisition serves to strengthen Fabrinet’s position as a leading manufacturer of optical sub-assemblies, components and modules by establishing Fabrinet in the China market, with a 225,000 sq ft manufacturing center. Fabrinet says the transaction also enhances its engineering and manufacturing technology base in optical amplification, optical bonding, crystal fabrication and standard borosilicate, clear fused quartz, and synthetic fused silica.

The Fuzhou operation, employing over 500 engineers, technicians, and skilled operators, will retain the name Casix and continue in its present state to manufacture primarily crystals and precision optics for Fabrinet’s internal consumption and external customers throughout Europe, North America, and Asia. The New Jersey sites are expected to consolidate into one location specializing in standard and synthetic glass products for optical communications, medical, and industrial markets.

China affiliate

Alfalight (Madison, WI) Sanetronic Company Ltd. (Kowloon, Hong Kong) as its distributor in China. Sanetronic will provide sales and support for Alfalight’s complete line of high-power diode pump lasers and laser modules throughout China. Sanetronic was founded in 1987 as an international distributor of electronic components including photonics and optoelectronics, serving commercial, industrial, and research markets. Sanetronic has eight offices throughout China, including Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Wuhan, and Chengdu.

New distributor

Special Optics (Wharton, NJ) and ROSH Electroptics (Netanya, Israel) have formed a new alliance. ROSH, a representative for several optoelectronic companies, is now representing Special Optics’ catalog and custom sales in Israel. According to the companies, the relationship has already yielded catalog and custom optical sales for military and semiconductor applications.

Korean distributor

nLight (Vancouver, WA), a manufacturer of high-power semiconductor lasers, named EO Technics (Anyang, Korea) its exclusive distributor for Korea. EO Technics will be responsible for sales and service of nLight’s CW and QCW high-power visible and near-infrared diode laser product line. Founded in 1989 by President and CEO Kyu-Dong Sung, EO Technics is an optical system distributor and integrator in Southeast Asia. The company also has international corporate centers in the United States, Singapore, and Taiwan and distribution branches in the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Thailand.

College support

ILX Lightwave (Bozeman, MT) plans to donate $100,000 in equipment to colleges and universities over the next five years. Beginning in July 2005, as part of its University Donation Program, ILX Lightwave will award $10,000 in ILX Lightwave equipment biannually to selected applicants. Recipients will be chosen based on the quality of their respective university’s photonics educational program and the relevance of the proposed research to the future of laser diode technology and applications.

Recognizing the need for cutting edge research and development programs in the fast paced world of photonics, ILX Lightwave developed its University Donation Program. Through its University Donation Program, ILX Lightwave will help colleges and universities create quality programs where the next generation of scientists and engineers can remain at the forefront of photonic research and development.

Applications for the July 2005 award period are due June 30, 2005. Application information is available online at www.ilxlightwave.com/UDP.html.

Sales partners

Lynx Photonic Networks (Calabasas Hills, CA), a provider of photonic switches, has signed OrbitIQ Inc. as a sales partner, selling Lynx optical switching products through the OrbitIQ North American channel. Lynx offers an extensive line of photonic switches based on its patented planar lightwave circuit.

Expanding

N-Science Corporation (N-Sci; Arvada, CO) has completed its inaugural contract with Sandia National Laboratory involving the production of the company’s low-reflectance optical surface called Deep Space Black. N-Sci has partnered with Advanced Surface Technologies (Arvada, CO) to produce this technology; a new organization, N-Sci/AST Optical Surfaces, is responsible for all aspects of deep-space black engineering and production. The team at N-Sci has been involved in the development of scientific instruments and components for many years. The new company has been organized to provide services and products in three areas: Payloads, Sensors, and Instruments (PSI); Deep Space Black; and Mission & Concept Development.

New GM

Avanex Corporation (Fremont, CA) has named Yves LeMaitre as vice president and general manager of the company’s newly formed optical components business unit, which combines the active and passive discrete components and the transmission modules groups. LeMaitre was most recently president and CEO of Lightconnect Inc., a supplier of MEMS components and modules for optical networking applications.

Submit your news to Optoelectronics Report. Sales reports, market outlooks, and strategic moves are just a few of the items we would like you to share. Please fax information to Kathy Kincade at (603) 891-0475 or send e-mail to kkincade@alamedanet.net.

Fiber purchase

EMCORE Corporation (Somerset, NJ), a leading provider of compound semiconductor-based components and subsystems for the broadband, fiber optic, satellite, and wireless communications markets, has acquired the analog cable TV and radio-frequency over fiber specialty businesses from JDS Uniphase Corporation. EMCORE paid JDS Uniphase $1.5 million at closing and has agreed to purchase between $2.8 million and $3.8 million of components and parts for use in the manufacture of the acquired products over the next two years. EMCORE will also assume some open purchase orders for inventory components, and will pay JDS Uniphase a royalty on licensed intellectual property.

The product lines that are part of this transaction include: hybrid fiber coaxial 1550-nm broadcast transmitters, in both legacy and linearized optical modulated designs, to link between cable network headends and hubs; 1310-nm transmitters linking cable network hubs and nodes; 1550-nm DWDM quadrature amplitude modulation transmitters; associated analog receivers; amplifiers for extending fiber network reach for FTTX applications; and radio frequency and microwave over fiber specialty products for defense and satellite communications.

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