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Business briefs

12 Mar 2007

Featuring news from Rofin-Sinar, M2K-Laser, Candela, Inolase, SPI Lasers, Aspectris, Northrop Grumman, Goodrich IMT, Oxford Instruments, Mitsubishi Electric, Optis, Corelase, Opton, Toshiba Imaging and others.

Rofin-Sinar Laser, an affiliate company of Rofin-Sinar Technologies, has announced that it has acquired 80% of the common stock of m2k-laser, Freiburg, Germany, in a cash transaction. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The remaining 20% of m2k-laser is still held by Fraunhofer Gesellschaft, Munich, and two former founders. The company was founded in 2001 as a spin-off of the Fraunhofer Institute of Applied Solid-State Physics in Freiburg, Germany. m2k-laser develops and manufactures semiconductor lasers based on the III-V compounds GaAs and GaSb for use predominantly in the scientific industry. Its main products are tapered diode lasers and tapered amplifiers.

Candela is to acquire all share capital of Inolase, Netanya, Israel, in a $16.5 million cash transaction. Inolase is the developer of Pneumatic Skin Flattening (PSF), a vacuum driven technology that provides pain-free, efficacious enhancements to all laser and light-based devices. PSF is US FDA-approved for use in hair removal when used with lasers or IPLs and CE marked. It is also under investigation for a variety of other applications including non-ablative skin rejuvenation, skin tightening and treatment of pigmented lesions and tattoos. Subsequent plans are to market PSF to optimally work with Candela's installed base of equipment beginning in the Fall of 2007. The acquisition is expected to be accretive to earnings within 18 months.

SPI Lasers has reported its preliminary results for the year ended 31 December 2006. Highlights included: turnover doubled to £7.1 million ($13.7 million); product sales more than doubled to £4.7 million, while contract sales totaled £2.4 million representing growth of 135% and 60% respectively. "The strong end to 2006 successfully rounded off what had been a challenging year for SPI," said David Parker, CEO. "Having met market expectations for the first half of 2006, we encountered technical process problems in the middle of the year that delayed the introduction of new products and slowed sales growth. But, we are delighted that the resolution of these issues enabled us to meet revised second half expectations and to build a solid order book as we entered 2007."

Northrop Grumman Laser Systems has selected Goodrich to develop a boresight monitoring camera subsystem to be used in a "multi-function" laser (MFL) for "Future Combat Systems". The boresight cameras will track and align lasers at multiple wavelengths on the MFL. Goodrich will begin development immediately and expects to deliver the technology in early 2007.

• Microlithographic company, IMT, Zürich, Switzerland, is building on its experience in thin film coating, the structuring of coatings and the manufacture of complex micro-structures with the addition of reactive ion etching (RIE) technology from Oxford Instruments. The dry-etch technology allows IMT to produce the smaller structures that are increasingly in demand. The investment, of around €600,000, is the latest expansion to IMT's 2300 m2 facilities.

Fiber news

Mitsubishi Electric has developed a new 10 Gbit/s transceiver module capable of a 40 km optical transmission. The company says that the module has the lowest power consumption in the industry, and that it complies with the 10 Gbit/s Form-factor Pluggable Extended Multi-Source Agreement (XFP MSA), the industrial standard for small optical transceivers. Sample shipments begin this month, March 2007. Specifications of the module include: an operating wavelength of 1550 nm; power consumption of under 2.5 W; size of 22x78x13 mm; transmission distance up to 40 km; and an operational temperatures range: -5°C to 70°C.

Optis has announced that Jiangda Technology Development is to distribute Optis's light and vision simulation software in China. The deal includes the Speos CAAV5 Based package, which is integrated in CATIA V5, the PLM CAD solution from Dassault Systèmes. Optis, based in France, and with offices on three continents, develops software dedicated to the optimisation of light behaviour in a CAD system.

Corelase has reached an exclusive agreement with Opton Laser to distribute its products in France. Opton distributes lasers and optical products to the scientific, industrial and telecommunications markets. Founded in 1990, Opton is located in Orsay, in the "Optics Valley", the heart of the most important French scientific community. Corelase has also reached an agreement with Azpect Photonics to distribute its products in Sweden, Norway and Denmark.

People

Toshiba Imaging Systems, has appointed Ian Tobi to the position of Marketing Support Engineer, to support the Industrial Imaging product line. Tobi is a 17-year industry veteran and will be reporting to Derrick Christy, director of the medical/factory automation business unit of the Irvine-based division.

• Alexios Paul Tzannis is new area sales manager at IMT Masken & Teilungen. After graduating from the Technical University of Denmark, he received his PhD in physical chemistry from the Paul Scherer Institute of Switzerland. With his broad experience in working on customer specific projects, Tzannis will be responsible for the contact to customers in UK, Benelux and Scandinavia.

Aspectrics has established a new Professional Services Division following the success of its pioneering Encoded Photometric Infrared Spectroscopy (EP-IR) analyzers. The division will work with customers to create "turnkey" custom solutions. The company has chosen John Beauchaine, former VP of Sales, to head up the new Professional Services Division.

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