20 Aug 2007
Featuring news from Universal Display, Zygo, Ocean Optics, Kopin, Labsphere and more.
• Revenue fluctuation as OLED technology develops was identified by Universal Display as contributing to a net loss of $5.1 million in Q2 2007 compared to a loss of $4.3 million for the same quarter of 2006. Revenues were $2.3 million, compared to $3 million in the equivalent quarter. The company indicated that advances in phosphorescent OLED technology along with increasing incorporation into commercial products would continue during the coming year and benefit the company's future results.
• Photon, a US manufacturer of beam-profiling instrumentation, has signed a distribution agreement with BFi Optilas for Switzerland and Italy. The French, German, and Italian speaking regions of Switzerland will be covered by the BFi Optilas offices in France, Germany, and Italy respectively. The company now distributes Photon instrumentation across the whole of Europe.
• The US Army has placed an $8 million contract for thermal imaging equipment with DRS Technologies. The company's Night Vision Systems business unit will provide the National Guard's Counterdrug Program with thermal imagers from the company's MX-2A product line. Delivery will begin immediately and the contract is expected to be completed by March 2008.
• Kopin will expand its Taunton, US, manufacturing facility to support demand for its display and heterojunction bipolar transistor products. New clean room facilities, infrastructure improvements and a job training program will be put in place following the award of a $3 million development grant from the state of Massachusetts, and the expansion is due for completion later in 2007.
• Two acquisitions by Nexxus Lighting demonstrate the company's stated strategy of moving further into LED lighting products in the US. Advanced Lighting Systems, a manufacturer of LED and fiber optic lighting products, will be merged into a wholly-owned subsidiary of the company. The acquisition of LightWild, a manufacturer of LED lighting products and control systems, is expected to proceed following due diligence. Nexxus is repositioning itself in recognition of a slowdown in its traditional bath and spa lighting markets, according to the company.
• A weapons-mounted illumination system developed by Xenonics which is claimed to illuminate targets at greater distances than other similar systems has been supplied to the US Army for evaluation under the Night Vision Sight Crew Served Weapons program. An initial 70,000 of the NightHunter3 system will be supplied, with procurement scheduled to begin in fiscal 2008.
• Zygo reported net sales of $46.5 million for Q4 of fiscal 2007, a fall of approximately 1.5% compared to Q4 2006. Net sales for the whole of fiscal 2007 rose to $181 million, an increase of 8% over 2006. Strong sales of optics, semiconductor and medical components offset the completion of a development services contract according to the company, although a decline in lithography OEM products was expected through the remainder of the calendar year.
• A custom-engineered spectrometer from Ocean Optics is due to arrive at the Moon's south pole in January 2009 as part of the Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) mission. Based on the company's QE65000 platform and dubbed Alice, it will deliberately be flown through the plume of ejected matter created by the impact of another rocket, in order to examine the ejecta cloud for water and carbon-containing molecules.
• Photonic Products, the UK laser diode and optoelectronics supplier, has made three appointments to its sales team. Paul Bonsi is sales manager for North Western USA and Western Canada, while Gary Polio is sales manager for the Eastern US and Eastern Canada regions. Tracy Duckworth has joined as sales assistant at the company's UK headquarters.
• Roger Xiao has been appointed Asia Pacific sales director for Labsphere's light metrology, spectroscopy and reflective materials products. He will be based in Shanghai.
• Michael Kennedy has joined Laseroptik, where he will be responsible for the production of high power coatings and assist the company in supporting customers with complex coating requirements. Kennedy previously directed thin-film production at Linos Photonics.