Industry Newsmakers - 2nd Quarter 2008

Industry Newsmakers

Second Quarter 2008

The following is a corporate news roundup from the Optical Society (OSA).  This quarterly gathering of industry news is a complimentary service offered by the OSA PR team.   

For more information on these or other OSA corporate members making news, please contact Lyndsay Meyer at or 202.416.1435.


Finisar Corporation -- Finisar and Optium Agree to Combine in All-Stock Merger

Lockheed Martin Corporation -- Lockheed Martin and Rice University Partner on Nanotech Research

New Focus, A Division of Bookham -- Bookham Acquires Laser Controller from Precision Photonics Corporation for New Focus™ Product Line

Newport Corporation - Newport Announces High-Energy Nd:YAG Laser 50/50 Beamsplitters

nLIGHT Corporation -- nLIGHT Receives 2008 Governor’s Emerging Trader of the Year Award

Ocean Optics – Ocean Optics Announces Three-Year Warranty on Spectrometers

Quantronix Corporation - Palitra OPA from Quantronix Provides Highest Conversion Efficiency on the Market

Raydiance, Inc. -- Raydiance Honored by Two Prestigious Industry Awards for Achievements in Business, Technology and Innovation

Second Quarter 2008 Industry News Summary

The industry’s leading conference on lasers and electro-optics, CLEO/QELS & PhAST, took place in May.  More than 350 exhibitors, including several OSA Corporate Member companies, were on hand displaying the latest products and innovations.  New Focus, a division of Bookham, announced the addition of the LB1005 High-Speed Servo Controller to its product line.  It acquired the LB1005 line from Precision Photonics Corporation.  The LB1005 high-speed servo controller is a one-box solution that allows for highly stable frequency and intensity locks on many types of lasers as well as synchronization of pairs of lasers.  Quantronix Corp. announced the new Palitra Optical Parametric Amplifier (OPA), which, according to the company, offers the highest conversion efficiency (40 percent at peak) and widest gap-free tuning range (0.175-22 µm) on the market.  Newport Corporation unveiled its new line of high-energy Nd:YAG laser 50/50 beamsplitters. The company now offers 16 different versions at four center wavelengths of 266, 355, 532 and 1064 nm, in both one- and two-inch diameters.

OSA Corporate Members continue to win industry accolades for their business and technological accomplishments.  Semiconductor laser and fiber manufacturer nLIGHT Corporation received Washington State’s 2008 Governor's Emerging Trader of the Year Award. The award honors a state business that has demonstrated innovation and success in international trade.  Raydiance, Inc., the developer of the world’s first compact, cost-effective and fully software-controlled ultrashort pulse laser system, was recognized as a Red Herring 100 North America winner, an award given to the top 100 private technology companies based in North America.  The company was also selected as a finalist in the Most Innovative Company category in the 2008 American Business Awards.

To stay on top of an ever-changing industry scene, OSA Corporate Members are developing new business practices and partnerships.  Finisar Corporation announced their merger with Optium Corporation in May.  The merger will create the world’s largest supplier of optical components, modules and subsystems for the communications industry, and will include 5,000 employees worldwide. Jerry Rawls will remain the executive chairman of Finisar's board, while Eitan Gertel will become president and CEO.  Lockheed Martin Corporation is partnering with Rice University to advance nanotechnology research and develop new technologies in such applications as electronics, energy and security.  The Lockheed Martin Advanced Nanotechnology Center of Excellence at Rice University, or LANCER, will pair researchers from Lockheed Martin with Rice experts in carbon nanotechnology, photonics, plasmonics and more.  Ocean Optics announced in April that they are offering a three-year warranty on their entire line of spectrometers.  Company officials say they are the only company in the photonics industry to offer this type of warranty.





David J. Wineland and Amnon Yariv Named 2017 Honorary Members of The Optical Society

The Optical Society (OSA) is pleased to name the recently elected, 2017 Honorary Members. The recipients are David Jeffrey Wineland, 2012 Physics Nobel Laureate, University of Oregon, USA, and Amnon Yariv, California Institute of Technology (CalTech), USA. The 2017 Honorable Members were approved unanimously by the OSA Board of Directors. Honorary Membership is the most distinguished of all OSA Member categories and is awarded to individuals who have made unique, seminal contributions to the field of optics.

Added: 18 Oct 2017

New Imaging Approach Maps Whole-Brain Changes from Alzheimer’s Disease in Mice

An estimated 5.5 million Americans live with Alzheimer’s disease, a type of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior. Although treatments can slow the worsening of symptoms, scientists are still working to better understand the neurodegenerative disease so that curative and preventative medicines can be developed. A new imaging system could help speed new drug development by offering a better way to monitor the brain changes indicative of Alzheimer’s in mouse models of the disease.

Added: 17 Oct 2017

The Optical Society Announces 2018 Fellows Class

The Optical Society (OSA) Board of Directors is pleased to announce that 101 OSA members, representing 19 countries, have been elected to the 2018 OSA Fellows Class. Fellows are selected based on several factors, including specific scientific, engineering, and technological contributions, technical or industry leadership in the field as well as service to OSA and the global optics community.

Added: 13 Oct 2017

In a first for wearable optics, researchers develop stretchy fiber to capture body motion

The exciting applications of wearable sensors have sparked a tremendous amount of research and business investment in recent years. Sensors attached to the body or integrated into clothing could allow athletes and physical therapists to monitor their progress, provide a more detailed level of motion capture for computer games or animation, help engineers build robots with a lighter touch or form the basis for new types of real-time health monitors.

Added: 12 Oct 2017

Freeze Frame Microscopy for 3D Biological Images Captures 2017 Nobel Prize in Chemistry

“The Nobel Committee’s recognition of yet another type of biomedical imaging underscores just how important, and enabling imaging and microscopy techniques are to all areas of science and medicine,” stated Elizabeth M.C. Hillman, professor of Biomedical Engineering at Radiology, Columbia University, and general chair of the upcoming 2018 OSA BioPhotonics Congress.

Added: 04 Oct 2017

Unlocking the Secrets of the Universe; LIGO Team Awarded 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics

Astrophysicists have long sought to detect ripples in space-time, called gravitational waves, since Albert Einstein’s 1916 prediction of General Relativity. But only some of the most massive astrophysical events, such as mergers of black holes and neutron stars, can produce gravitational waves strong enough to be detected on earth. Today, the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to Barry C. Barish and Kip S. Thorne, California Institute of Technology, USA and Rainer Weiss, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA, "for decisive contributions to the LIGO detector and the observation of gravitational waves."

Added: 03 Oct 2017

DNA: The next hot material in photonics?

Using DNA from salmon, researchers in South Korea hope to make better biomedical and other photonic devices based on organic thin films. Often used in cancer treatments and health monitoring, thin films have all the capabilities of silicon-based devices with the possible added advantage of being more compatible with living tissue.

Added: 02 Oct 2017

Circadian Rhythms, the Body's Natural Time-Keeping System, Awarded 2017 Nobel Prize

Most of the processes that occur in the mind and body follow natural rhythms. Those with a cycle length of about one day are named circadian rhythms. The 2017 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded today to Jeffrey C. Hall and Michael Rosbash of Brandeis University, USA and Michael W. Young, Rockefeller University, USA, "for their discoveries of molecular mechanisms controlling the circadian rhythm."

Added: 02 Oct 2017

The Optical Society Congratulates the LIGO and Virgo Scientific Collaboration for Fourth Gravitation

Albert Einstein’s 1916 general theory of relativity was validated for a fourth time according a joint announcement between the international LIGO and Virgo Scientific Collaborations. Only some of the most massive astrophysical events, such as mergers of black holes and neutron stars, can produce gravitational waves strong enough to be detected on earth. On August 14, the Virgo Collaboration, along with the U.S. LIGO observatories, detected its first gravitational wave signal from a pair of black holes violently merging over a billion light-years away. LIGO’s previous detections have stemmed from merging black holes but this is the first time a merger has been witnessed by three observatories at one time.

Added: 28 Sep 2017

OSA Laser Congress Highlights Latest Advances in Solid State Lasers, Free-space Laser Communication,

The 2017 OSA Laser Congress will offer a comprehensive view of the latest advancements in solid state lasers and other related technology. The conference program is comprised of a global audience of laser leaders and a comprehensive, peer-reviewed presentations. Market-focused sessions describe the needed technological and engineering advancements required to move these laser technologies into commercial products.

Added: 26 Sep 2017

The Mars 2020 Rover Features New Spectral Abilities with its New SuperCam

As the NASA Curiosity rover roams the surface of Mars, its ChemCam captures the chemical makeup of its surroundings with a specially designed laser system. It is the most powerful laser to operate on the surface of another planet. The burst of infrared light it fires lasts only a few billionths of seconds, but it is powerful enough to vaporize the spot it hits at more than 8,000°C. Even from a distance, the ChemCam can examines rocks and soil using a process called Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS), where laser bursts atomize and excite components and spectral images capture their chemical signatures.

Added: 25 Sep 2017