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Business briefs

05 May 2006

Including news from Firecomms, Inphase, JDSU, Corelase and more.

General company news:

•  Corning, US, is investing a further $174 million to expand its Gen8 LCD glass substrate manufacturing facility in Shizuoka, Japan. The company expects commercial shipments of Gen8 glass to begin in Q3 this year, with additional capacity coming on-line through 2007.

•  Corning also announced this week that is has signed a supply agreement with Sharp. The deal makes Corning the majority glass substrate supplier for Sharp's Gen8 fab in Mie Prefecture, Japan, which is currently under construction and expected to open later this year.

•  JDSU's Photonic Power Business Unit is claiming a world record in the conversion efficiency of laser light into electrical power. The firm's 3V and 5V gallium arsenide photovoltaic power converter, which allows fiber optic "power" cable to be used in place of traditional copper wire, has an optical-to-electrical conversion efficiency of greater than 50%.

•  Inphase, a US developer of holographic data storage, has signed an OEM agreement with asm, a German manufacturer of video archives. Inphase-equipped asm libraries will offer up to 1,095 TB of data storage, equivalent to 24,146 hrs of HD content at 100 Mb/s.

•  Zygo, US, has announced the first shipment of its front-end semiconductor metrology tool, the Z3D 7000, to a tier-one semiconductor manufacturer. Zygo says the tool has been designed to meet the growing need for in-line etch, deposition and planarization process metrology for the 45 nm node and beyond.

•  Corelase of Finland, a developer of laser technology for materials processing applications, has appointed the Analytical Group of companies as its exclusive distributor in South East Asia.

•  Digital imaging specialist, DALSA has established a new business unit to focus on the Asia-Pacific market. DALSA Asia-Pacific will be led by Keith Reuben, who reports directly to the Canadian firm's CEO, Savvas Chamberlain.

Acquisitions and funding:

•  Lytron, a supplier of liquid cooling products, has acquired fellow US firm Lockhart Industries, a subsidiary of Wakefield Thermal Solutions. Lockhart designs and manufactures aluminum-brazed cooling components for the military and electronics markets. Lytron plans to move and integrate California-based Lockhart into its Massachusetts facility later this year.

•  US-based Laserscope has acquired privately-held US firm InnovaQuartz for approximately $7.5 million in cash. Laserscope, which develops minimally-invasive medical devices including medical lasers, is now looking to exploit InnovaQuartz's range of fiber optics, sterile fiber-optic delivery devices, optical components and optical subassemblies.

•  Chemical giant Solvay of Belgium is ploughing $3 million into the Georgia Institute of Technology's Centre for Organic Photonics and Electronics (COPE) over the next three years. The cash will fund research into OLEDs.

•  Firecomms of Ireland has closed a Euro 9.6 million ($12.2 million) investment deal with new and existing shareholders. The additional funding will allow the firm to increase production of its semiconductor VCSELs and newly released fiber optic transceivers, as it looks towards consumer electronics and automotive markets.

•  Modulight of Finland has received a $364,000 contract from the European Space Agency (ESA) to develop lasers for space-based atomic clocks. The lasers will act as the pump source for compact caesium-based atomic clocks, which are being targeted for use on ESA's satellite navigation mission Galileo.

CHROMA TECHNOLOGY CORP.CeNing Optics Co LtdBerkeley Nucleonics CorporationHyperion OpticsOptikos Corporation LaCroix Precision OpticsIridian Spectral Technologies
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