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SPIE and Photonics Media Prism Awards honor photonics innovation

03 Mar 2021

The show must go on: annual prize-giving event for groundbreaking technologies and products takes place online.

Earlier today, Wednesday, during the Prism Awards, SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, and Photonics Media recognized the leading optics and photonics products on the market.

The 13th annual ceremony — normally an invitation-only, black-tie affair held during SPIE Photonics West in San Francisco — was held online, streaming from the Prism Awards website.

The virtual platform offered an opportunity to involve participants across the globe, while also flavoring the high-profile recognition showcase with an adventurous James Bond/Steven Spielberg/Indiana Jones accent.

The 90-minute affair highlighted an exciting range of dynamic companies — from Kyocera SLD Laser and nanoLambda, to Teledyne DALSA and Element Six — all of them applying innovative and creative solutions to critical problems in areas such as life sciences, smart sensing, transportation, quantum, and vision technology.

Each year, the Prism Awards reflect the latest exciting developments, exponential growth, and rich technical innovations across photonics and photonics-enabled industries. For consideration of this year's awards, SPIE received 149 applications from 18 countries. Finalists and winners are selected by a panel of international judges that included leaders from both the technology commercialization and funding sectors.

Judging panel

The distinguished presenters of the Prism Awards represented the best of the global photonics industry: Microsoft Senior Hardware Engineer Architect Maria Pace; GS1's Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives Rosalie Clemens; Lumentum's Director of Product Line Management for 3D Sensing Matthew Everett; Raytheon Engineering Fellow Gerald Uyeno; the FDA's Director of BioMedical Physics Division Zane Arp; Rutgers University Associate Professor of Materials Science and Engineering Laura Fabris; Zemax CTO Sanjay Gangadhara; AegiQ CEO and Co-founder Maksym (Max) Sich; Photon etc., Business Development Director Marie-Christine Ferland; and MKS Instruments' Spectra-Physics Senior VP and General Manager Dave Allen.

“It's always such a pleasure to recognize and celebrate our Prism Award winners, finalists, and applicants and particularly so this year, with its many challenges and changes,” said SPIE CEO Kent Rochford. “These scientists, researchers, and engineers are bringing key technologies and products to life, energizing the photonics market, and making a palpable impact on all of our lives.”

“The Prism Awards represent the highest honor the photonics industry can bestow,” said Photonics Media CEO Tom Laurin. “The pandemic challenged — and continues to challenge — the global economy. But the contributions from this year's applicants go to show that no obstacle can stifle innovation.

“From all of us at Photonics Media, I'd like to congratulate the 2021 Prism Award winners. You've rightly earned your place at the vanguard of this industry.”

Award categories and the winners

  • Life Sciences: Augmentiqs Medical
  • Manufacturing: Boston Micro Fabrication
  • Medical Devices: Norlase
  • Quality Control: Teledyne Dalsa
  • Quantum: Element Six
  • Safety & Security: RaySecur
  • Smart Sensing: nanoLambda
  • Software: ALPhANOV
  • Transportation: Kyocera SLD Laser
  • Vision Technology: WaveOptics

To find out more about the Prism Awards, visit the Prism Awards website.

Boston Electronics CorporationSchaefter und Kirchhoff GmbHLightPath TechnologiesCobolt ABEKSMA OpticsLASEROPTIK GmbHficonTEC Service GmbH
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