17 Mar 2008
Featuring news from Laser Optics Berlin, Northrop Grumman, Tessera, DILAS, Nualight and more.
• Laser Optics Berlin, the international trade fair and convention for optical and laser technologies, takes place in the Palais am Funkturm, Berlin, 17–19 March. More than half of the exhibitors will be from outside the local region or from other countries and this is the first year that the show will be held on the Berlin Exhibition grounds. This indicates that the show is establishing itself as an international industry meeting place, according to the organisers.
• Northrop Grumman has demonstrated a laser chain, the first major building-block of a solid-state demonstrator laser designed to reach a power level of 100 kW. The Joint High-Powered Solid State Laser (JHPSSL) Phase 3 program was said to have exceeded all target requirements of its second major demonstration milestone, including excellent beam quality. The JHPSSL system is designed to accelerate solid-state laser technology for military uses, including force protection and precision strike missions for air, sea, and ground-based platforms.
• OptiML UFL technology has been made available for licensing by Tessera. Lens design and embedded processing technology in OptiML UFL is claimed to improve low-light performance of a camera module by increasing the amount of available light by as much as 250%, without degrading performance. The move is part of Tessera's intention to be a 'one stop shop' for consumer optic solutions, according to the company. See earlier coverage of OptiML technology on optics.org.
• DILAS, a developer of diode laser sources based in Germany, has opened its first manufacturing facility in China. Located in Nanjing, it will offer a full complement of customer support, product development and technical services, and is said by the company to represent a sizeable investment in the growing Chinese market. The company already has a sales office in Shanghai.
• A whitepaper from Nualight claims that the use of digital lighting based on LEDs can save retailers more than 50% of their annual lighting bill for refrigerated display environments, which account for the highest density of energy usage in supermarkets. For a mid-size retailer with 100 stores, this means a saving of around £550,000 ($1.1 million) per year in energy bills, according to Nualight, along with environmental benefits. See earlier coverage of Nualight on optics.org.
• Philips has sold 24 million shares of common stock in LG Display, representing 6.7% of LG Display's issued share capital and reducing Philips' holding to 13.2%. The transaction will provide Philips with net proceeds of approximately €680 million ($1 billion), and is said to be in line with Philips' communicated strategy to further reduce its holding in LG Display in a structured and responsible manner.
• Results from Lumera showed a net loss of $5 million for Q4 2007 and of $15.9 million for the full year, a decline from the losses of $3 million and $12 million for the equivalent periods of 2006. Reduction in revenues from completed government contracts was said by the company to be largely responsible for the reduction. The introduction of a 40 Gbit/s polymer modulator and continued development of life science products during the year were singled out as achievements that the company would build on in the future.
• Progress in the development of directed energy weapons and counter-IED (improvised explosive device) programmes contributed to a jump in revenues for Applied Energetics to $12.4 million for 2007, up from $10 million for the previous year. The company's net loss of $14.8 million was an improvement compared to the $18.7 million loss posed in 2006. The completion of certain government contracts related to directed energy weapons was said to be primarily responsible for the change, and a number of opportunities in energy-based products for military and other applications are expected to unfold during 2008.
• Biolase, a developer of dental lasers, and Henry Schein, a provider of healthcare products and services to office-based practitioners in the North American and European markets, have renewed and strengthened their multi-year distribution agreement. Henry Schein remains the exclusive distributor of the complete line of Biolase dental laser systems and services within the US and Canada, and will augment service and support functions to meet new commitments to sales and marketing milestones. Biolase will provide training support to enable Henry Schein to provide basic services through its service network, and promote Henry Schein Financial Services as its exclusive leasing and financing partner.
• Reflex Photonics, a developer of high-speed optical connectivity products, has relocated its business operations from Montreal to the Silicon Valley to strategically align itself with existing and potential customers and industry peers. The company's R&D division will continue to operate with expanded facilities in Montreal, according to a statement.
• AMS Technologies, a pan-European distributor of high-tech components and systems, and Enfis, a British manufacturer of semiconductor-based light source modules and systems, have signed a distribution agreement for all EC countries. The agreement covers high-power light-emitting diode (LED) arrays and smart light engines across a wide range of wavelengths. AMS also announced that it will sell Gooch & Housego's entire product range in Germany, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Spain, Portugal and Switzerland. AMS had previously been official distributor of SIFAM Fibre Optics, which was recently integrated into the Gooch & Housego brand (see earlier coverage on optics.org).
• Ed Fisher has been named the new vice-president of global sales by E Ink, a developer of electronic paper display technology. Fisher joins from Advanced Micro Devices and has experience in the semiconductor and personal computer industries, which will strengthen E Ink's support to customers adopting electronic paper displays, according to the company.