Optics Industry report

July 1, 2005
Fabrinet (Bangkok, Thailand) plans to purchase the JDS Uniphase (San Jose, CA) manufacturing facilities located in Fuzhou, China.

Fabrinet to acquire JDSU facilities in China

Fabrinet (Bangkok, Thailand) plans to purchase the JDS Uniphase (San Jose, CA) manufacturing facilities located in Fuzhou, China. Under terms of the arrangement, Fabrinet will acquire all assets and operations related to the Fuzhou plant, including R&D and the manufacture of products such as crystals and precision optics.

The 225,000-sq-ft Fuzhou plant has more than 500 engineers, technicians, and skilled operators who are expected to transfer to Fabrinet and continue their employment at the site.

Polychromix, Ocean Optics partner

Polychromix (Wilmington, MA), a developer of wavelength management solutions, and Ocean Optics (Dunedin, FL) signed a worldwide distribution agreement to market cost-effective spectroscopy solutions for general-purpose applications. The partnership allows Ocean Optics to add to its spectroscopy portfolio by distributing Polychromix’s near-infrared Digital Transform Spectrometer (DTS) product family.

“Our MEMS architecture works perfectly within the spectroscopy market because it provides a portable, cost-­effective device never before offered,” said Mouli Ramani, vice president of marketing and business development for Polychromix.

SPIE and OSA lobby for more funding

Members of the Optical Society of America (OSA; Washington, D.C.) and The International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE; Bellingham, WA) traveled to Washington, D.C., May 1011 to express to Congress the need for increased and balanced federal investment in research and development, reiterating that federally funded research is critical to securing the nation's future.

In addition, SPIE joined 40 engineering, scientific and academic associations in issuing an updated list of recommendations for enhancing the United States visa system, urging the government to accelerate its effort to reform the visa process for international students, scholars, and researchers.

Major growth predicted for nonlinear materials

According to a new report from Business Communications Co. (BCC; Norwalk, CT), the global market for nonlinear optical (NLO) materials is expected to top $1.6 billion by 2009, up from an estimated $856 million in 2004. The report, Nonlinear Optical Materials Applications, analyzes the mutual impact of NLO materials on the telecommunications industry and electro-optics industry.

According to BCC, the total market is expected to grow at an average annual growth rate (AAGR) of 17.1%, which is mainly due to the demand for LiNbO3 for telecommunications, and nonlinear crystals such as KTP, BBO, and LBO for lasers and electro-optical applications.

Nanotech grant supports new sensor development

The National Academies Keck Futures Initiative has awarded a $50,000 grant for nanotechnology research to Holger Schmidt, assistant professor of electrical engineering at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Schmidt will work with Xing Su, a collaborator based in Santa Clara, to develop a new type of optical sensor for medical and biological analysis that would enable the optical detection of specific molecules with single-molecule sensitivity using a compact chip-based device.

Schmidt’s lab has developed integrated optical waveguides with liquid cores, enabling light propagation through tiny volumes of liquids on a chip. Su works with composite nanoparticles that can be used to amplify optical signals through an effect known as surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS). The researchers plan to combine the two technologies to create an integrated biophotonic Raman sensor.

Also in the news . . .

Polychromix (Wilmington, MA), a developer of modular optical subsystem solutions for molecular spectroscopy, received $3 million in additional venture funding from new investor, Lighthouse Capital Partners. . . . Applied Technology Associates (ATA; Albuquerque, NM) finalized a license agreement with MIT Lincoln Lab (MIT/LL; Lexington, MA) for use of its Fast Steering Mirrors (FSMs) technology. . . . Lambda Research (Littleton, MA), appointed Allan Kreutzer as vice president of sales and marketing. The company also announced its status as a supplier to Bionix Development (Toledo, OH), winner of the 2005 Medical Design Excellence Award for The Lighted Ear Curette, which was designed using TracePro, Lambda Research’s optical simulation software. . . . Bayer MaterialScience (Leverkusen, Germany) has signed a joint development agreement with InPhase Technologies (Longmont, CO) for the development and supply of polymer raw materials for the production of optical-storage media with a very high storage capacity. . . . The Observatoire de Haute-Provence (Marseille, France) has purchased a series of high-precision optics from Optical Surfaces (Surrey, England) that will enable researchers to extend the capabilities of the observatory’s 1.93-m telescope.

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