Enabled by Optics

Corporate Winner Announced for
1st Annual Enabled by Optics Contest

Trojan Technologies

Optics is Everywhere… Optical technology has become essential to every aspect of modern life…from public safety to consumer products, medical marvels to finance, entertainment to technology—to all aspects of our daily lives. Take a look at the enabling technologies submitted to the 1st Annual Enabled by Optics contest. 

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Ultra violet light technology used in Trojan Technologies water treatment systems. Credit: Trojan Technologies
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From the water we drink to the processed water we use in our industries and in agriculture, water is a precious resource that touches every person on the planet in one way or another every single day. As the world’s population increases, so too does the demand for this commodity. Since only one per cent of the world’s water is fresh water and that only a small percentage of that is drinkable, the challenges in maximizing this resource for current and future generations are obvious. Increasingly, municipalities are turning to UV to ensure the safety and quality of their water, and to restore public confidence in their water supplies. The use of UV disinfection prevents the spread of harmful organisms in the water supply, and UV also destroys harmful contaminants. Learn more 

Corporate Contest Runner-up

Eyejusters Ltd

View all the other entries:
Agilent Technologies
Applied Research & Photonics
Attodyne Inc.
BiOptic, Inc.
Ciena
Corning Incorporated
General Photonics
Guild Optical Associates
Ibsen Photonics
Infinera
OEwaves
PolarOnyx, Inc.
SCHWIND eye-tech-solutions GmbH & Co.KG
Telescent
X-ROM, Inc.

 

Corporate Contest Winner

Trojan Technologies, Ontario, Canada

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

From the water we drink to the processed water we use in our industries and in agriculture, water is a precious resource that touches every person on the planet in one way or another every single day. As the world’s population increases, so too does the demand for this commodity. Since only one per cent of the world’s water is fresh water and that only a small percentage of that is drinkable, the challenges in maximizing this resource for current and future generations are obvious. In the spring of 2000, about 2,500 people in Walkerton, Canada, fell ill and seven died when E. Coli from manure spread on nearby fields was washed into the water supply by heavy rains. For more than a quarter of a century, matching proven solutions to water-related environmental problems has been the hallmark of Trojan Technologies. Since 1977, the company has led the change to water disinfection systems that use environmentally responsible, cost-effective ultraviolet light in place of chemicals.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

Prior to the 1980s, almost all municipal waste water was disinfected by chlorine. By the early 1990s there was a realization that the chlorinated compounds produced when high concentrations of organic substances are mixed with chlorine could be harmful to animals and humans. These substances are called disinfection byproducts (DBPs), and because of possible carcinogenic properties, DBPs are now regulated. There was a growing need to provide an alternate water treatment solution to chlorine, which has been provided by ultraviolet light. Microorganisms absorb UV light causing the formation of dimers in nucleic acids so the organism cannot reproduce. For environmental contaminant treatment (ECT), contaminants can be destroyed by direct photolysis, where one of the chemical bonds within the molecule ruptures to produce a biologically benign product. A second method uses advanced oxidation processes, where highly reactive hydroxyl radicals are formed which destroy contaminants.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

Ultraviolet disinfection provided a transformational ability to provide safe water without harmful byproducts, and a unique method to remove harmful chemical contaminants from drinking water. Today, Trojan is recognized as the leader in advanced UV water treatment technology in a growing number of key market sectors including municipal drinking water and wastewater, environmental contaminant treatment and residential applications, as well as the ultra-purification of water used in food and beverage manufacturing, pharmaceutical processing, and semiconductor applications. Trojan’s success is evident in more than 8,000 municipal UV disinfection facilities operating in over 80 countries − the largest installed base of UV systems in the world.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

Water treatment systems are produced by Trojan Technologies and sold primarily to municipalities who install these systems as part of the water treatment plant. For example, the Orange County Water District in Fountain Valley, California injects highly treated wastewater into the local aquifer to prevent the intrusion of salt water from the ocean as water is withdrawn from the aquifer for irrigation or drinking water.  This system uses a TrojanUVPhox™ system utilizing UV light and hydrogen peroxide to accomplish a 1.2-log reduction in NDMA concentration while acting as a barrier to a wide variety of wastewater-derived contaminants.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Other
Municipalities/Utilities

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

Increasingly, municipalities are turning to UV to ensure the safety and quality of their water, and to restore public confidence in their water supplies. The use of UV disinfection prevents the spread of harmful organisms in the water supply, and UV also destroys harmful contaminants.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

Intense UV light sources in the 200-290 nm wavelength region are needed for disinfection and ECT. The UV dose received by the organisms or contaminants is monitored with UV intensity sensors and UV transmittance monitors, which is critical to ensure that the required dose is maintained during water treatment. Optics tools such as UV light sources, robust optical sensors, and optical simulations of UV water treatment systems, allow optimization of the performance of UV reactors.

Additional information. 

  1. Trojan Technologies

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Corporate Honorable Mention

Eyejusters Ltd, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

We make self-adjustable glasses (called Eyejusters), where the power of the lens can be changed with the turn of a dial. Our product can help solve a major public health need: over 700 million people worldwide, mostly in the developing world, lack a pair of glasses that they need to see clearly due to a lack of trained optometrists. With Eyejusters, a user can put the glasses on and adjust the lenses until they see clearly, greatly reducing the barriers to entry of distribution of eyewear.

Eyejusters are also the world’s first adjustable reading glasses, allowing customers to replace multiple pairs of reading glasses that have different lens powers for different tasks (such as reading, computer use, cookery and hobby work). Customers in the US, UK, Europe and Canada can purchase their own adjustable reading glasses and at the same time donate a pair to a vision project in the developing world.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

Although there have been several attempts at making adjustable focus glasses in the past, Eyejusters are the first to put our lenses into normal metal spectacles frames, with the lens units completely separate from the frames. This is a simple but crucial advance.

We take a similar revolutionary refining step with our lens optics. Our SlideLens technology is a development of optical work done in the 1960s (the Alvarez lens). The principle is simple - two specially shaped lens elements slide across each other, and as they do, the power of the complete lens system changes. Eyejusters’ innovation has been to take this principle and rebuild it from the ground up to make it suitable for use in eyewear. To do this we have developed custom modelling and simulation software which allow us to make optimisations on our optics that were never before possible. This allows us to offer high-quality optics at a low cost, using the advanced manufacturing techniques we have developed in-house.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

For end users in the developing world, we offer a transformational product. The ability to set the power of your own lenses to correct your own vision brings the possibility of good vision within reach for those previously denied it due to a lack of services. Organisations working in the developing world, including NGOs and micro-business retail channels can offer a new service with little overhead or investment.

Customers of our adjustable reading glasses get an incredible convenience product that overcome a common complaint with normal reading glasses - you have to keep changing them every time you want to focus on a different distance. It's a great improvement on traditional reading glasses at a good value price (starting at $40).

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

At present we have a simple value chain to customer in both our main markets.
In the developing world we work with partner organisations who deliver glasses on the ground, either through commercial outlets/retailers or through charitable efforts. We have worked with Peace Corps volunteers, the Radler Foundation, and Global Vision 2020, and will soon be running trial projects with World Vision Canada and a variety of micro-business retailers in India.

In the US customers can buy directly from us through our website, or from our retailers (FirstStreet, DebSpecs, Innovative Reading Glasses) who purchase from us.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Other
Consumer

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

We make self-adjustable glasses, where the power of the lens can be changed with the turn of a dial. Over 700 million people worldwide, lack a pair of glasses that they need to see clearly due to a lack of optometrists. A user can put our glasses on and adjust the lenses until they see clearly.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

You can see our videos of Eyejusters in use at www.youtube.com/user/eyejusters
More information is available at www.eyejusters.com

Additional information.
  1. Eyejusters - Developing world vision
  2. Eyejusters - Adjustable readers

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Agilent Technologies, Inc., CA, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

It now seems hard to believe, but almost 20 years ago engineers developing optical transmitters and systems for high-speed digital communications did not have a tool designed specifically to view and analyze their waveforms.  In other words, there was no optical oscilloscope.  Engineers had to cobble together a measurement system from products that were designed to see electrical signals.  Now, it seems reasonable to say that virtually every information bit that travels across the internet will go through hardware tested with an Agilent Digital Communications Analyzer, our trade name for the optical oscilloscope.  This tool, now commonly known as a ‘DCA’, is the backbone of the test equipment found on every optical engineer’s bench.  The term ‘DCA’ is now a common vocabulary ‘word’ for optical engineers.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

At the time that the DCA was being designed, the alternative was to hang an optical to electrical converter on the electrical channel of a common oscilloscope.  The problem was that the system was uncalibrated, signal fidelity was degraded by the extra connections, and the system is just clumsy, with the converter hanging out in space, sometimes getting bumped into and broken off.  We developed our own high-speed photodetectors that matched well with our instrumentation electronics to create a very accurate high fidelity measurement system.  In hindsight, it seems so obvious, but this was the first.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

An oscilloscope designed specifically to view optical signals was exactly what the optical communications engineer needed.  It was like handing a shovel to a guy who had been digging ditches with a pitchfork.  It did not take long to become the tool that every optical communications engineer was using.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

Finisar (or any other transceiver manufacturer) designs a new transceiver.  The design engineer regularly evaluates the transmitter performance by viewing the optical waveform.  Once the design is complete, manufacturing begins.  Every laser is turned on by observing and optimizing the optical waveform while laser bias is adjusted.  The transceiver is sent to a communications company (Cisco, Huawei, Juniper…..).  Evaluation parts are tested with an optical oscilloscope to verify that specs are met.  Good parts are sent to switch/server designers.  As the system is developed, optical waveforms are analyzed and verified.  When the systems go to manufacturing, optical waveforms are measured to ensure system specs are met.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Semiconductor MFG and telecom/Datacom

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

We believe that virtually every computer bit that travels across the internet flows through hardware that was tested with an Agilent Digital Communications Analyzer or DCA.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

The DCA was not developed by oscilloscope engineers.  They thought it would be crazy to have an instrument dedicated for optical signals.  They were adamant that a removable optical converter was ideal.  You could then remove the converter to make electrical measurements.  They did not realize that the optical engineer makes 95% of their measurements on optical signals.  Accuracy and ease of use were far more important than flexibility.  Fortunately the tribal elders lost the argument.

Additional information.

  1. Agilen Infinium DCA-X (jpg)

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Applied Research & Photonics, Pennsylvania, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society.  How has the population been impacted by your technology.  This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

ARP’s CW Terahertz technology has impacted in nano-scale wafer inspection to minimize wafer rejection, transdermal drug delivery and analytical areas for trace explosive detection. Wafer rejection costs billions of dollars because ~30% wafers are rejected when the current testing methods fail to “see” nano-scale defects hidden in the interior layers. ARP’s CW terahertz inspection system can identify nano-scale defects buried in the interior layers of wafer, thus stop process at the early stage. ARP’s terahertz scanner can quantify the kinetics and concentration distribution of topical drugs via non-invasive, direct measurement in real-time. In the analytical applications, ARP’s terahertz time domain spectrometer offers a resolution of parts per billion; thus capable of detecting trace amount of explosives (and other molecules). Thus this technology is making an impact in the aforementioned areas.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

ARP’s technology is unique in a couple of aspects. First, ARP generates CW terahertz radiation from electro-optic dendrimer. Here a new mechanism was invented by creating dipole distribution in dendrimer molecule which allows a broadband source. In addition, the source power can be tuned up to a few tens of milliwatts over a wide range of up to 35 THz. Utilization of this source in ARP’s products such as terahertz spectrometer allows discovering new physical phenomenon in molecules that were not visible by its predecessor spectroscopies. For non-invasive depth profiling, a resolution down to 1 nm is unique. For sub-surface nano-scanner and 3D imager opens a new horizon of wafer inspection, and also biomedical imaging such as early detection of skin cancer. Imaging may also be used for dental caries and breast cancer detection. There are other applications of the scanner such as paint thickness or defects, art and murals, paper thickness and coating integrity, layer non-uniformity, etc.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

ARP’s CW terahertz technology is a revolution in itself because it did not follow the traditional route of terahertz generation by femto-second pulsed laser. A new concept was introduced via electro-optic dendrimer. Terahertz spectroscopy enabled by this route makes a transformational change in that a number of new molecular resonances became visible that were never seen before. Many theoretically predicted peaks for Fullerene matched by ARP’s terahertz spectra. The direct measurement of skin permeation kinetics and concentration is also a brand new concept that was implemented for the first time by ARP’s scanner. Similarly, sub-surface wafer scanner and 3D imager on a nanometer scale is also a first in its class.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

Samsung was having failure issues with their OLED display modules. Two different class of module with different substrates, were having unexpected dead pixels that could not be resolved with their SOTA instrument that coast in the tune of million dollar.  Based on ARP’s proposal, Samsung sent their engineer with several of the OLED modules that had known failure. ARP offered testing service and worked for a week with their engineer at ARP’s facility in Harrisburg. Their problem was solved by discovering sources of problems including nano scale defects buried in the layers. Similarly, service was provided to SAIC to characterize their vaccine and cancer drug candidates. Other services include tobacco GMP and early detection of dental caries.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Defense|Bio|Display|Semiconductor|Other
Transdermal drug delivery

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

You can eliminate wafer rejection to save billions in fab waste.
Now you can “see” what’s below your skin without radiation hazard.
Detect traces of explosives from meters away.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

Being a start-up company and not being blessed by any grant or major investment, ARP had to depend on innovation for its survival. This led ARP to invent new ways of revenue generation. We began by collaboration with reputable entities such as SAIC, Samsung, ARL, PennState Univ, Colgate and others. Many were attracted by ARP’s unique capabilities and wanted to try their problem. We took on the challenges and produced useful results. This way, we were able turn many collaborators in to customers.

Additional information.
  1. Rahman1.png
  2. bcove.me/uypc4yac

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Attodyne Inc., Ontario, Canada

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

Attodyne’s revolutionary air-cooled APL picosecond lasers are uniquely compact and affordable with a form factor closer to that of a conventional nanosecond-uv laser rather than an ultrafast laser. This allows advanced manufacturers to use the precision of ultrafast cold ablation in processes where it would not have been possible before.  The process of cold ablation avoids the heat damage that leads to burrs and recast when cutting with conventional lasers. As consumer devices grow increasingly complex, the precision required for manufacturing continues to increase rapidly. A critical driver for picosecond lasers is the continuing need to manufacture higher value added products within a smaller footprint. New manufacturing processes involve increasingly complex materials and require greater precision and reliable automation.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

Attodyne’s APL series offer highly stable and durable picosecond lasers, with flexible specifications: the repetition rates can be anywhere from 1 Hz to 1MHz with pulse energies going to as high as 250uJ. The size of this powerful machine is only one third of that of the competition, and it is air cooled, which eliminates the complications associated with maintaining water cooled systems. Attodyne lasers are so robust that you can drop the laser and it will still work like a charm. 

The unique form factor makes them ideal for processes and applications where other existing picosecond lasers just don’t fit.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

Attodyne picosecond lasers are a practical substitution for femtosecond lasers in many applications. An important example is the manufacturing of bioabsorbable stents, an innovative surgical technology that eliminates the risk of surgical complications. The lives of patients are significantly improved, since bioabsorbable stents reduce recovery time and eliminate the need for further interventions. Also, imaging of the vessels by CT or MRI is possible since there is no residual metal shielding, which allows proper monitoring of the patient. Most surgeons agree that a bioabsorbable stent that can dissolve in the body in 6 months is a paradigm shift in the world of coronary artery intervention.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

We manufacture a picosecond laser that is sold to system integrators. The system integrators build a full laser machining system which is then sold to the end user who uses it to e.g. manufacture bio-absorbable stents.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Bio|Display|Semiconductor

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

As consumer devices grow increasingly complex, the precision required for manufacturing continues to increase rapidly. Picosecond lasers allow new manufacturing processes with increasingly complex materials to drive the evolution of cutting edge consumer products such as smart-phones and displays.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

Attodyne also has developed the next-generation of surgical laser. One of the major complications of any surgical procedure is the generation of scar tissue inside the body, which can require repeated surgery to remove and restore normal function. Attodyne’s mid-IR picosecond laser, the PIRL, offers the possibility of scar free healing and cutting with precision down to the limit of a single cell.

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BiOptic, Inc., CA, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

Qsep100 DNA Fragment Analyzer provides quick results (less than 5 minutes) with high detection sensitivity, high resolution.

The Qsep100 provides a great economical advantage over the traditional Agarose gel Electrophoresis or Lab-on-Chip devices. You can analyze 96 samples in less than 4 hours. The disposable gel-cartridge has an integrated RFID chip which helps to track the Serial number, type of gel, expiration date and number of programmed runs with the software. One can process two 96-well sample trays at $40, which is less than $0.20 / sample run. This kind of cost savings and simplicity in operation has provided great flexibility for the end users (Biologists, Chemists…) in major research labs so they can focus more on their research work.

The Qsep100 has been used in HLA labs to speed up the HLA SSP Genotyping for the Organ Transplantation applications. The product is currently being used in the Clinical Diagnostic type applications (HPV, Factor V)

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

We have designed a single capillary CGE instrument with a pen-shaped compact capillary cartridge utilizing a novel micro-ball ended fiber optic-based LED-based fluorescence detection system. This automated system provides a good and easy-to-use alternative to labor intensive slab gel electrophoresis systems, also features high resolving power, excellent detection sensitivity and rapid analysis times for quantitative or qualitative analysis of dsDNA fragments.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

We launched Qsep100 in 2012. Our technology / product provides transformational change to the Slab-gel-Electrophoresis end-users, which have been the labor intensive and time consuming type devices for the past 30 years with no major improvements.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

Companies such as:
One Lambda (Thermo Fisher Scientific) use the Qsep100 for HLA SSP Genotyping applications.
BioDot (Irvine, CA) use the Qsep100 for genomic DNA (gDNA) applications prior to Real-time-PCR applications
Primex Clinical Laboratories (Van Nuys, CA) who are developing MDx type Primers for Diagnosis of HPV, Factor V, Factor II, MTHRF applications and Fragile X type PCR Markers.
Prozyme Inc. (Hayward, CA) using our CE system for Glycoprotein applications.
Distribution and OEM partners:
China OEM partner--- East Win 
Japan Distributor--- AR Brown Inc.
 Korea Distributor--- Quantum Design Korea
Taiwan Distributor---Centec Scientific, Inc and Unimed Healthcare Inc.
USA---Direct Sales

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Bio

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

We have produced Qsep100, which is the most sensitive, accurate and cost-effective Analyzer in the Market that provides High-Resolution, High-Detection Sensitivity results with it’s Disposable Pen-Shaped Cartridge at less than $0.20 / sample run for bio-molecules analysis.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

Gel-cartridge has the integrated gel-matrix with the EtBr dye sealed as part of the assembly, so there is no cause for toxicity to the environment which is the opposite for the standard Slab-gel-Electrophoresis devices. Another advantage is that it operates at 24V DC, which provides additional safety features to the end-user and has low EMI to the outside environment. And the instrument could be used in the field with DC solar batteries.

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Ciena, Maryland, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

Communication networks are evolving. More people and things are connecting to the network. We’re sending videos, emails, photos, music and tweets. Businesses are sending huge files. As such. carriers need to scale their networks cost effectively to handle  surging bandwidth demands. More than 50 service providers across the globe  leverage Ciena’s 100G WaveLogic technology to do this.

With Ciena’s technology, a 100G network can use just one strand of fiber to handle the traffic generated by 4 million iPhone users who at the same time decide to stream video to their handsets.  Ciena’s 100G WaveLogic technology also helps research, education and healthcare organizations to use fascinating and sometimes life-changing applications like virtual learning and collaboration. For example, the CANARIE network, was used to accelerate medical discoveries and innovations in brain research, and help eliminate geography challenges by delivering medical education to remote and rural areas.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

Ciena pioneered the world’s first 100G coherent optical systems that make networks significantly faster and able to accommodate growing bandwidth demands.  Ciena’s coherent optical processors increase network bandwidth to a staggering 100Gigabit/s per optical channel and beyond, giving an optical fibre the total capacity of a whopping 8.8Terabits/s. It also enables carriers to gain more bandwidth from fiber already in use, without needing to add new, expensive equipment.  It also improves network economics and offers more flexible architectures by making networks more intelligent so that they can support fluctuating customer requirements for capacity, latency and reach – brought about by subscriber’s hunger for anywhere ,anytime data.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

When  Ciena’s 100G solution  was introduced,  it enabled network operators to increase the bandwidth of their existing 10G and 40G fiber infrastructure by 10 and 2.5 times, respectively, through simple plug-and-play components – without the need to re-engineer networks or deploy new equipment. Ciena’s 100G coherent optical solution allows carriers to eliminate degraded user experience while providing the capacity to satisfy the exploding bandwidth demands driven by new applications, services and backhaul requirements.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

Ciena’s 100G technology is sold directly to telecom carriers, cable and submarine operators. Our 100G customers include Verizon, AT&T, BT, Reliance Globalcom, Comcast, Cable&Wireless, Interent2 just to list a few. Ciena is the recognized global leader in coherent 100G ports shipped.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Telecom|Other
Enterprises, Utilities, Media and Entertainment, Financial Services, Research & Education and Government

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

Scaling networks economically to meet ever-increasing traffic demands and high-bandwidth applications is now a reality. Ciena’s 100G solutions expand capacity without disrupting existing networks, providing simple and cost-effective upgrades from 10G or 40G to 100G.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

We live in a digital world. The networks that power the transmission of digital files and communications are increasingly pushed to their limits. Ciena's 100G solution boosts network capacity, helping to clear the network ‘highways’ of congestion even before traffic jams start. It also allows networks to be programmed to adapt to needs of users, resulting in a strong demand for Ciena’s 100G solution, highlighted by the more than 50 customers across the globe that has deployed the solution.

Additional information.

  1. 100G and beyond for Research & Education networks (Video)
  2. The 100G Connected Global Village (Infographic)

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Corning Incorporated, NewYork, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

History is occasionally reshaped by a discovery that changes the world. Today, we have a technology that revolutionized the way the world communicates. That technology is optical fiber. Through this astounding medium, we transmit voice, data and video at the speed of light along a strand of glass thinner than a human hair. In 1970, Corning invented the first low-loss optical fiber for use in telecommunications. At that time, signal loss at 17 decibels of light per kilometer of fiber was achieved. Since then, Corning’s ongoing innovations have helped make possible ever-faster telecommunications. Today, our optical fibers have a signal loss of 0.17 decibels per kilometer. Optical fiber technology provides the necessary bandwidth for the services we all depend upon. It connects us to communications networks through devices. These devices enable us to send e-mail, conduct research, join social networks, teleconference and much more. None of this would be possible without optical fiber.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

Prior to the invention of optical fiber, copper wire was the primary medium used for telecommunications. In the mid-1960s, it became clear that copper would not have enough bandwidth. The race among preeminent scientists to develop ultrapure glass capable of transmitting data over light signals was on, and ultimately Corning won.

Corning’s approach was unique in three key ways. First, our research competitors tried to improve the very best known meltable, multi-component optical glasses. In contrast, we chose Frank Hyde’s fused silica (silicon dioxide) the simplest composition, but most difficult glass to handle because of its high melting temperature. Second, we designed the fiber by putting an impurity (Martin Nordberg’s titanium) in the fiber core where the highest transparency was needed. Third, we inverted the conventional “rod-in-tube” fiber making process by depositing a thin film of the Hyde-Nordberg soot material inside a starting tube.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

The optical fiber technology developed by Corning in 1970 was a breakthrough that completely transformed the telecommunications industry. It was a protracted process that required a significant investment of “patient money” to develop a manufacturing process to produce the fiber on a large scale. Simultaneously, new companion technologies such as cable and connectors had to be developed as well.  Of course the semiconductor laser also played a key role by encoding the data to be put on the optical fiber. In 1983 when MCI selected Corning for the first major installation; we had our first commercial customer. Today there are over 1.8 billion kilometers of fiber deployed around the world that have forever changed the end-user experience.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

Corning Optical Fiber manufactures fiber for every application in today’s telecommunications networks. While we are becoming vertically integrated in that we sell our fiber to Corning Cable Systems, we have a number of additional cable customers such as Prysmian Cables and Systems who sell into the public market sector. These companies then sell the cabled fiber to telecommunications carriers such as AT&T, China Telecom and Comcast who install the fiber in their networks and provide a variety services to their end-user customers. Corning fiber is also sold to large distributors such as Anixter and Graybar who supply the enterprise market, which includes customers such as Google.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Telecom

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

Optical fiber is the backbone of the global telecommunications infrastructure, enabling instant transportation of voice, data and video to anyone, anywhere, at any time. The technology has removed barriers of distance, time, and location as it connects the world literally at the speed of light.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

Corning has led the industry in optical fiber innovation for more the 40 years. Our latest product, SMF-28® Ultra fiber, is the first to combine the benefits of industry-leading attenuation and improved macrobend performance in one fiber. Likewise, our ClearCurve® VSDN® fiber is uniquely designed to support emerging high speed interconnects between computers and other consumer electronics devices. These are just two examples of Corning’s unmatched prowess in advancing optical fiber technology.

Additional information.

  1. Lightwave Special Reports - Optical Fiber Spans 30 Years (pdf)
  2. Get the Facts on Fiber Optics (pdf)

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General Photonics, California, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

ALMA (Atacama Large Millimeter Array) is the highest and largest radio telescope array in the world. 66 mm-wave antennae are spread over a hundred square kilometers at 5,000 meters above sea level on the Atacama plains of Chile. The radio signals from the antennae are sent via optic fibers to a central location, and are synchronized and kept in phase using a fiber optic "stretcher" developed and manufactured by General Photonics.

Our patented technologies are embedded in the Line Length Corrector module that controls the delays of the signals from the radio antennae to the control center to a precision of less than 1 micron in fiber links up to 16 km long (6.3x10^-11 relative stability). This fine tuning of the path length enables the antenna arrays to be perfectly in phase to render the highest resolution images ever gathered of the far universe.  As a river of new data flows from ALMA, society will be impacted by new visions of the universe and a deeper understanding of our origin.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

The challenge was to control the optical path length of the light by as much as 4 mm to an accuracy of less than 1 micron at rates up to 1 kHz in order to dynamically compensate for the signal path variations caused by temperature and mechanical motion in a fiber up to 16 km long.  At such a high accuracy, it is important at the same time to dynamically manage the state of polarization in order to minimize subtle polarization effects.

The technologies employed by General Photonics are covered by several company patents including US patent 6836327 B1 (in-line polarimeter), US patent 7382962 B1 (fiber stretcher), and US patents 6480637 and 6493474 (fiber squeezer polarization controllers). 

Other technologies provide path length control but at slow speeds, and are not available with polarization monitoring and control. The combination of delay and polarization management is the unique result of the extensive patent portfolio of General Photonics.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

A transformational change is synonymous with “throwing out the old textbooks.” For example, when the first glass telescope was pointed toward the skies, all notions of the Earth being alone had to be abandoned. ALMA has already shown us that the behavior of the “old” universe is not what we theorized. This transformational change in our knowledge was enabled in part by the General Photonics Line Length Corrector module that allowed the scientists at ALMA to focus their radio telescopes beyond the “beginning of time.”

Transformation of our basic beliefs begins with satisfaction of our curiosity about our universe, and ALMA will do more to show us how we were formed than any previous technology.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

In 2004, engineers at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) requested a LLC (Line Length Corrector) for their customer, the ALMA project. General Photonics worked with NRAO for many years to refine the design, and the product was eventually installed at ALMA in 2011 by NRAO.For this scientific application, the buying chain is relatively simple.  When our technology is used in medical instrumentation, the buying chain is more complex. Typically, a medical system manufacturer integrates the General Photonics modules into an instrument that is then sold to a hospital or clinic. Doctors and patients have no direct knowledge of the General Photonics module installed inside the medical system or the role it plays in managing the light.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?

Other
Society is the ultimate end user of advanced research. Future generations will benefit from the higher resolution of the solar system that ALMA provides, by knowing when and how the universe was formed.

When variations of the General Photonics optical delay and polarization control technologies are used in medical instrumentation, such as OCT systems, the patients are the end users that receive the benefits. Similarly, when our technologies are used for testing fiber optic telecommunication and sensor systems, design and test engineers are the end customers.  Our technologies are also used in fiber optic sensor systems for oil drilling or national security; in such cases, the end users are the automobile drivers and the public, respectively.   

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.
When engineers design scientific, sensing and medical systems using lasers and optic fibers, they often need to precisely control the polarization and delay of the light. General Photonics is the leading company for the control and measurement of polarization and delay of light in optical fibers.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

On March 4, 2010, an earthquake of magnitude 6.3 struck Calama, Chile, near the ALMA Radio Telescope site. The resulting earth movement at the site was 100 times the movement that would normally be expected due to normal temperature and mechanical effects. However, not only was the Line Length Correction system undamaged, but it recorded the earthquake to a precision heretofore unavailable to researchers.

Additional information.

  1. Pictures captured by ALMA (PPT)
  2. The movie ALMA - In Search of our Cosmic Origins (doc)
  3. Precision Timing Control for Radioastronomy (pdf)

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Guild Optical Associates, NewHampshire, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

Guild Optics made a first of it's kind donation to Sonora's Super Scientists. This is a children's optical science learning group put together by UC Irvine's Stephen Sasaki.

Guild Optics donated many sapphire and glass lenses, windows, mirrors that will teach children about the joys of optics and inspire future generations of optical geniuses for years to come.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique? What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

The unique part about this is that I have found no record of this size or quality of a donation ever taking place before. Children normally do not have access to these types of optical components. Getting them in their hands at this time in their lives should inspire them.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

Stephen Sasaki told me that this type of donation has never taken place before and it would surely inspire many generations of children in the near future.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

Guild Optics manufactures sapphire material grown by GT Advanced Technologies. We were asked if we had any "junk" to donate by Sonora's Super Scientists program leader Stephen Sasaki. We sent him quality over run or slightly out of spec. optics that he is using in his educational program.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Other
Any fields these kids may grow up to be in

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

Everyone would agree that children are our future. Guild Optics believes in putting the tools for success in their hands and has given them the optical components to learn from.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

The 78 optical components donated were of high quality optical materials. The pieces are used by major companies here in the US. Total estimated value over $4000

Additional information.

  1. Sonoras Super Scientists Photo Album Guild (jpg)
  2. Donation_35.jpg
  3. Donation2_35.jpg

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Ibsen Photonics, Denmark

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

Our technology enables the use of spectroscopic techniques for in-line process control at the manufacturer floor of e.g. dairy, feed and grain suppliers due to an immense improvement in robustness and thermal stability over previously applied techniques. Our technology enables: Reduced cost of manufacturing of various food items by improved process controls, increasing profitability and reduced down time; Better and more consistent quality of food items, benefiting customers; Reduced waste of raw materials, benefiting the environment. Example: A producer was making about 4,000 tons of butter a year and had a variation of about 0.25% in the process. To be on the safe side, he set a target of 15.65 vs. the legal spec of 16.00% moisture. But with in-line analysis he could reduce the variation by 0.08% allowing him to move his target up to 15.85. His yield grew by 15,000 kg per year – an extra profit of about EUR 40,000. It’s like he was able to turn 15,000 kg of water into butter.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

Our spectrometers provide 2-6 times higher sensitivity than competitive technologies due to use of our innovative high diffraction efficiency transmission gratings. Our gratings are made in very pure glass, which can withstand high temperature ranges, humidity, and power of light. Furthermore, our spectrometers have no moving parts. They are extremely robust and can be used in challenging environments. This increased sensitivity and robustness was paramount to enabling in-line process control in factories. Finally, our spectrometers exhibit a very low unit to unit variation in terms of power and wavelength calibration and this is crucial for ensuring easy installation and low maintenance cost. It does not take a PhD. to install and run the instruments as were often the case with previous instruments.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

Our technology completely changed the way process control is performed in dairy, feed and grain manufacturing. Traditionally, at-line process control had to be invasive (taking out a sample), was carried out at hourly intervals, and required a laboratory environment away from the manufacturing floor. With our technology, non-invasive, in-line process control has been enabled. In-line analysis enables you to detect real-time trends in processes much faster than with at-line, and react to the changes. The result is reduced process variation, allowing you to move your production targets closer to the specifications, to increase your yield and to improve your quality.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

We produce spectrometer modules that we sell to instrument manufactures like FOSS A/S, a market leader, who in turn sell their instruments to producers of dairy products (butter, cheese, and yoghurt producers), feed and forage (animal feed ingredients producers and compound feed mill companies) and grain milling (soy and flour producers like Spanish premium flour suppliers Emilio Esteban and grain supplier Senwes, South Africa).

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Bio|Display|Telecom|Other
Dairy, Feed, Grain, Milling, Meat

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

Our spectrometers measure the color content of light with unprecedented accuracy, robustness and stability. Our customers integrate them into instruments that use light to measure parameters like protein content real time in production, improving quality and reducing raw material waste.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

Our gratings are produced on 6” fused silica wafers with up to hundreds of gratings per wafer, using methods from traditional semiconductor manufacturing. In this way we have been able to turn our high efficiency transmission grating production into a high yield, low cost mass production process.
We are working on getting more end-customer testimonials, and our hopes are to be able to submit them soon, perhaps before your  next deadline in the selection process.

Additional information.

  1. How to raise quality in flour milling (video)
  2. In Focus - Premium Control (PDF)

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Infinera, CA, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

Infinera revolutionized the communications industry as the first and still the only company to produce large scale 100Gb/s photonic integrated circuits (PICs) for optical transport systems. Today, Infinera's latest 500Gb/s PICs, delivered on the DTN-X platform, provides an innovative solution that is more simple, scalable, reliable and economical for service providers globally. Our study* of a large-sized network reveals that the Infinera DTN-X saves up to 60% in overall total cost of ownership over competition over 10 years. This allows operators to rapidly create a faster and a more resilient Internet than alternate solutions, helping end-customers to be more productive in their professional, social or personal lives.

*we invite you to review the study

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

The Infinera DTN-X platform is uniquely engineered with integration at the component and the system level. Its line cards are built with two key technologies – electronics and optics.  For electronics, some vendors have a coherent processing, including Infinera. For optics only Infinera has a large-scale PIC which combines 600 discrete functions into a pair of finger-nail sized Indium Phosphide chips. Infinera delivers 500 Gb/s on a single line-card integrating optical transport and digital switching functions with absolutely no performance compromise; scaling up to 5-10 Tb/s per bay today, and 240 Tb/s in a multi-bay system in the future. This is only possible due to PICs as they use 50% less power/cooling, and 33% less space than alternates. The DTN-X also has far fewer operational steps enabling a speedier return on investment. Network deployment can be completed in days and service provisioning in minutes via unique technologies on the DTN-X, compared to weeks using competition.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

When first launched by Infinera, the photonic integrated circuit (PIC) technology made a huge impact on society. Several attempts over decades preceded the commercialization of the PIC technology without success. The now shipping Infinera DTN-X, based on the 500Gb/s PICs, allows global operators to deploy 500Gb/s capacity per slot on a single platform. The PIC technology has been failure-free for over 850 million hours of production thus far. Moreover the unique software capabilities on the DTN-X allow this vast capacity to be provisioned in minutes. These quantum leaps in performance are helping service providers to rapidly build a faster and a more resilient Internet.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

Infinera customers span a variety in segments in the communications industry including top-tier and competitive service providers, wholesale operators, content providers, cable operators, submarine operators and research communities. For example, our solutions are sold to customers like Telefonica, CenturyLink, Interoute, Teliasonera, DANTE, PACNET, KDDI among others. These operators build networks with the Infinera DTN-X platform helping connect their customers with each other. They either sell to other service provider customers or deliver services directly to business and consumers in the form of Internet data, voice or cable video services.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Telecom

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.
Infinera solutions connect users across the world to a faster and a more resilient Internet improving productivity in their professional, social and personal lives. E.g. Consumers can stream Netflix or YouTube videos and engage on Facebook on networks built using Infinera solutions.

Question 7: Surprise Us! What else should we know about your product/technology?

The Infinera technology of photonic integrated circuit (PIC) has now lit up over 1.23 million kilometers of fiber, that is thrice the distance from the Earth to the Moon. Over 3 Petabits of capacity is now powered by the PIC technology with over 850 million hours in production without a single failure. This reliability is significantly higher than a non-integrated discrete optical component – the laser diode.

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OEwaves, CA, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

Asymmetric warfare represents the majority of conflicts that the United States has been facing abroad; victims being both soldiers and innocent civilians. A tactic in asymmetric warfare is the use of mortars, artillery, and small missiles to inflict major harm to human life. The goal is defeating these projectiles before they reach their target: “shooting a bullet with a bullet.” This requires high agility to reach a small target within a few seconds of launch. This “bullet” is a small, highly maneuverable missile that quickly seeks and intercepts the deadly projectile. The lifesaving technology requires a tiny radar seeker to fit within the small missile. Conventional electronics cannot meet this demand, but OEwaves’ opto-electronic oscillator (OEO), configured with OEwaves’ crystalline whispering gallery mode resonator, does in a tiny form factor. This is a new paradigm for high performance radar and other surveillance needs for small defensive missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?
OEwaves’ opto-electronic oscillator combines a unique and patented opto-electronic feedback loop to generate highly spectrally pure microwave and mm-wave reference signals. The performance of the OEO is determined on the quality factor of the oscillator which is based on low loss optical storage elements such as fiber and resonators. Laser light provides the energy that circulates in the loop and generates the electronic reference signal. The unique optical whispering gallery mode crystal resonators developed at OEwaves allows architecting the oscillator in form factors as small as a postage stamp, nearly 500 times smaller than conventional reference oscillators. The unique approach provides unprecedented performance in a miniature form factor, allowing capabilities that are only available to large systems, on tiny radar and surveillance equipment. This unprecedented performance is representative of how optics can outperform electronics, even in generating reference electronic signals.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

Without the OEO, the tiny defensive missile that can shoot small deadly projectiles out of the air within the short timeframe of seconds would have been impossible.  In fact, OEwaves’ technology was sought out and its development was supported by the Department of Defense solely because it is the only alternative currently available for realization of this capability.  The OEO is not only a transformational technology, its capabilities made the new shield of the defensive missile possible.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

The new technology of OEO was specifically adopted by Army’s Extended Area Protection System (EAPS) in support of Lockheed Martin’s development of a tiny missile.  It is currently being provided to the Army by Lockheed Martin, to which OEwaves is a sub-contractor.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Defense|Auto|Bio|Energy|Telecom

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

Our laser-based oscillator is the eye of the radar, and its performance allows radar to see farther and clearer.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

It combines optical components including linear optics (in the form of high Q), nonlinear optics (as a Kerr frequency comb), and electronic components to produce the highest spectral purity in microwave and millimeter waves.  That is the surprise!

Additional information.

  1. Eaves-microOEO.jpg
  2. OEwaves’ Micro-Opto-Electronic Oscillator (Micro-OEO) Supports Successful Miniature Interceptor Test Flight Press Release (doc)
  3. Mico-Opto-Electronic Oscillator (jpg)

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PolarOnyx, Inc., California, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society. How has the population been impacted by your technology. This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

The growing demand of smart phone, microelectronics, automobile, solar energy, LED display, and aerospace requires breakthrough technology to fabricate, trim, and scribe densely integrated electronics with superior performance and lower operation cost over long pulsed lasers.

Femtosecond (fs) laser provides a vital solution to these areas ($10s billion market), due to its less heat affected zone (no damage to surrounding materials or structures) and nanometer feature precision. It has been proved a disruptive technology to remove sub-micron ultra thin layer of electronics or solar cells, to drill tiny via in ultra dense integrated circuits, to trim LED cells, to athermally cut display glasses, to do cataract, refractive surgery (such as LASIK), and nerve surgery and reconstruction for faster patient recovery, to micro-machine energy saving auto-engines, etc.

The future of femtosecond fiber lasers is beyond our imagination and without boundary.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique? What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

PolarOnyx's unprecedented industrial grade 50 micro-J femtosecond fiber laser comes with the state-of-art management of all fiber based nonlinearity and dispersion of chirped pulse amplification (>100 kW peak power handling, 100 W average power handling) and compression (100 MW peak power).
Compared with solid state laser (Coherent) and hybrid (solid state plus fiber amplifier, Amplitude), our high energy fs fiber laser product possesses many unique features:

  • 24/7 continuous operation, robust against environmental changes
  • Desktop computer size, 3x smaller v.s. solid state or hybrid lasers
  • (3-10) x Energy saving
  • $100K v.s.>$250K of solid state lasers
  • 10 years life time v.s. 3 years
  • Turn-key operation: an ordinary technician can operate the high energy fs fiber lasers after a few hours of training.

Compared with our fiber laser competitor (IMRA), PolarOnyx has 20% lower in price and operation cost, 50% smaller in size, and 5x increases in pulse energy.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

Since launched in January 2012, our industrial customers quickly adopted it in their existing applications and are exploring new fields as well. They believe the product provides a transformational change in industrial fs laser processing to increase productivity and return on investment. As examples, our product has been used in superior blackening and coloring process; and in processing micron level layers of solar cells with ultra precision.
Moreover, with PolarOnyx’s modular design and standardized procedures, the price can be immediately reduced to < $100K level for low volume manufacturing and further reduced to $30K level for large volume production. Currently, all fiber lasers are made by operators.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

Samsung indicates their strong interest in our fs fiber lasers (compared with solid state or hybrid fs lasers and other fiber laser vendors) for microelectronics and LED display (Galaxy and HDTV) due to its compactness, energy saving (high wall plug efficiency), low cost ($100K), long life time, and low maintenance. Apple is another giant customer we are working with in broad areas, such as marking, coloring, glass cutting, etc. With fs fiber lasers, the fine marking and coloring is independent on materials, which provides a flexible and cost effective way for iPhone and iPad manufacturing. Lutronics, LG, GT Advanced Technologies, and Ascent Solar are using our lasers in LASIK, laser cosmetic surgery, display, and solar energy.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Defense|Auto|Bio|Display|Energy|Semiconductor

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

Our industrial grade high energy fs fiber laser is the enabling technology for fabricating next generation flexible electronics such as smart phones, LED displays, medical devices, and solar cells. It provides the sole solution to those industry customers in both technology and cost.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

Combining state-of-the-art fiber laser technology, continuous innovations, and expertise in optical packages, PolarOnyx has established various platforms in engineering fiber oscillator, fiber amplifiers, electronics, and compressor in small modularized assembly. We have established a culture (4As: Attitude, Attention, Accuracy, and Assurance) that are related to process control, cost reduction, quality assurance, and custom satisfaction. All fiber laser products are manufactured by operators.

Additional information. 
  1. PolarOnyx High Energy Fiber Laser (jpg)
  2. Industrial Grade 50 micro-J High Energy Femtosecond Fiber Laser (docx)

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SCHWIND eye-tech-solutions GmbH & Co.KG, Bavaria, Germany

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society.  How has the population been impacted by your technology.  This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

The SCHWIND AMARIS excimer laser is a medical device used in corneal refractive surgery for the correction of ametropia, such as myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness) and astigmatism. The ‘TotalTech Laser’ SCHWIND AMARIS has been a technology leader since its introduction in 2007 and has impressed as a continuous pacesetter. 2009 heralded the integration of the world’s first six-dimensional eye tracking system, which actively compensates all possible eye movements. 2010 saw the market launch of the flagship SCHWIND AMARIS 750S, which reduces the treatment to just 1.5 seconds per dioptre at a pulse frequency of 750 Hertz. Since the beginning of 2012, the SCHWIND AMARIS product range has been offering the latest technology for the treatment of presbyopia in the form of the PresbyMAX® µ-Monovision. The procedure ensures excellent visual acuity at all distances and provides quick and high patient satisfaction.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

The most important benefit of the SCHWIND AMARIS 750S is the extremely short treatment time combined with unmatched safety features, such as the six-dimensional, active 1050 Hertz eye tracking. One dioptre of myopia is corrected with very high precision in only 1.5 seconds. Thus, the patients only need to focus on the fixation light for a very short time. Furthermore, patients benefit from the furthest developed eye tracking system in the market. It actively compensates eye movements in all six dimensions, both statically and dynamically. The Automatic Fluence Level Adjustment (AFLA) method ensures an ideally balanced ration between the total number of laser pulses and the energy delivered. The Intelligent Thermal Effect Control (ITEC) method effectively preserves the cornea, even with very high ablation speed. The integrated online pachymetry safety system allows precise evaluation of intraoperative ablation parameters during refractive surgery.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

The laser system is equipped with two energy levels. At first, it uses a high energy level and rapidly ablates around 80 percent of the tissue to be removed. A gentler beam ablates the remaining 20 percent, thus assuring an especially smooth surface and perfect vision. 2) The laser system is equipped with a unique thermal control system. Even at high ablation speed the corneal tissue is effectively preserved. The laser pulses are temporally and spatially sorted, which gives the individual position on the cornea sufficient time to cool off. 3) The laser beams of the SCHWIND AMARIS technology have an exceptionally small diameter of only 0.54 millimetres. The cornea becomes especially smooth with this fine beam.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

SCHWIND is present in more than 120 countries worldwide. Sales and distribution takes place in Germany through the company´s own organisation, and in all other markets through carefully selected distribution partners. Customers include refractive surgeons in eye practices, eye clinics, laser centers and university clinics.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Bio

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

The SCHWIND AMARIS 750S offers the leading technology for eye laser treatment – superior in all important aspects: Speed, precision, safety and comfort.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

The product has already won five awards for innovative strength. According to a recent survey conducted by the market researching company Market Scope, excluding the US market, SCHWIND achieved a 34% global market share in laser sales in 2011 with SCHWIND AMARIS technology. More than 130 publications in peer-reviewed scientific magazines have been published so far on successful clinical experience with SCHWIND AMARIS technology.

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Telescent Inc., California, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society.  How has the population been impacted by your technology.  This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

Data centers are the factories of tomorrow. Fiber optic networks are growing on a massive scale as video and social networking applications double the amount of Internet traffic each year. 1 Gbps FTTH, 100x faster than typical broadband, is now being deployed.  Data centers house >100K computers under a single roof and cover 1 million square feet of space, equivalent to 8 Home Depots. Google’s data centers consume over 300 million watts of electricity and cost in excess of $500M each. Imagine the challenge to manage your own PC and now multiply this by a million! It’s not surprising that according to HP, the cost to staff these facilities exceeds $200B/yr. NIST affirms that “managing the numerous configurations found within information systems and network components has become almost impossible using manual methods (Pub. 800-137)”. To address these challenges, Telescent automates the physical network to enhance efficiency and improve reliability.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

To program the physical network, Telescent has developed an automatic, 1008x1008 port optical cross-connect switch. This system uses our sophisticated Knots and Braids Switching (KBS) algorithm, described in nine issued and twenty pending patents. A commodity robot “software-defines” the fiber optic links by physically routing fibers in a non-blocking way. The KBS algorithm enables the size, cost and complexity of our optical switch to scale as N, the number of interconnects, unlike crossbar switches that scale inefficiently as N^2. Telescent’s linear scaling characteristic is a revolutionary advance that manages and mitigates the exponential growth in data center complexity. Our system is an enabler of Software-Defined Networking (SDN), transforming the way networks are managed. In validation of our approach, Telescent was invited to speak at the recent Open Networking Summit 2013. Telescent’s technology extends SDN to the physical network layer-0, the most complex network layer.

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

Microsoft reports that 95% of data center bandwidth is wasted in today’s static networks. Telescent improves utilization by programmatically defining the physical topology based on the demands of the application layer. Telescent’s Network Topology Manager (NTM) automates the control of physical network connections to construct the optimal physical topology on an hourly or daily basis, also reducing downtime and human error. This new paradigm in operating data center networks has been demonstrated during our deployments at CERN and Verizon. Network agility results in significant utilization gains. The DoE and NSF have supported the development of Telescent’s NTM system since 2008, validating the transformative nature of our technology.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

Telescent’s robotic cross-connect is the engine of our NTM solution,  an integrated hardware and software system. The NTM is early in the product life cycle and commercialized through a combination of direct and indirect sales. We sell directly to data center operators headquartered in North America and will sell internationally through distributors and resellers. In the US alone there are more than 400 multi-tenant data center operators like Equinix and CoreSite and mega data center operators like Amazon Web Services and Google. Port counts are growing at about 20% a year. The NTM addresses a massive market opportunity of over $1B.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?
Telecom

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

Eliminate under-utilization, downtime and human error by automating the fiber optic network in data centers!

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

The Theory of Knots and Braids is more commonly used to study DNA folding in biology and fundamental particles in high energy physics. Telescent’s KBS algorithm represents optical fibers as strands organized into braids.  This representation is the basis for our deterministic algorithm, which reconfigures massive numbers of strands without entanglement.  The Telescent switch is the optical analog of a loom, in which arbitrary cross-connect patterns are woven into the interconnect fabric.

Additional information.

  1. telescent.com/tswitch_video.php
  2. Large Scale, All-Fiber Optical Cross-Connect Switches for Automated Patch-Panels (pdf)
  3. Software Defined Patch-Panels (ppt)

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X-ROM, Inc., Washington, USA

Question 1: Describe the profound impact your technology – as part of an end-user product – has had on Society.  How has the population been impacted by your technology.  This could be behavioral, economical, societal, etc.

New Global Economy - is the Low-Carbon Economy. Plants absorb the carbon from atmosphere and store it in the wood fiber. In the Low-Carbon Economy, forestry operations will be focused on low-impact practices and re-growth. Forest managers will make sure that they do not disturb soil based carbon reserves too much. Specialized tree farms will be the main source of material for many products. Quick maturing tree varieties will be grown on short rotations in order to maximize output.

One of the pathways towards the Low-Carbon and Forestry Economies could be a Paper-Less Economy, because paper is typically made from the wood fiber, and its consumption puts substantial pressure on the world’s forest ecosystems. It is evident that the ultra-high density digital storage of data and documents in electronic form would lead to a decline in paper consumption. Hence the incessant interest to creation and storage of the huge volumes of digital information.

Question 2: Tell us about how your technology is unique?  What makes it stand out? How do you differentiate it from other similar technologies?

We currently are promoting X-Ray Optical Memory (or "X-ROM") is the next-generation ultra-high definition hard x-ray optical storage device with the digital data density of about 10 Tbits per square inch for each storage layer of developed "X-ROM disc."

Question 3: When first launched, did your technology make a transformational change for the end-user or incremental changes by improving a current technology?  Describe this.

Forthcoming devices with the increasing digital data storage capacities necessarily require an optical read-out devices operating on the basis of Angström wavelength radiation that is on the hard x-ray wavelength.
Proposed "X-ROM" is the radically new x-ray-based optical data storage technology. Digital data reading procedure from such ultrahigh-density x-ray optical data storage media is performed via grazing-angle incident x-ray micro beam.

Question 4: Give a specific example (with company names) of the buying chain for your product/technology once you sell it to the next level buyer.  Provide an example of the succession of companies your product goes through, ultimately to get to an end-user.  Example:  We produce a component that we sell to a laser systems manufacturer (name the company) who sells it to a medical OEM (name the company), who then sells it to a hospital (name the hospital).

We are bringing our ideas to prototypes, which could be improved and finally released by big companies like IBM or Intel.

The volume of data is growing exponentially around the world, so the X-ROM implementation would be a temporary success in the "combat" against nowadays information explosion. XROM is mainly designed for the following target customers:

• Any organization that has the need to store and keep available digital information over many years such as Deposit Libraries, National Archives, Governmental Institutions, Pharmaceuticals, Banks and Insurance Companies.

Question 5: In which vertical market(s) would you classify the end-users of this technology?

Semiconductor|Telecom|Other
Any organization that has the need to store and keep  available digital information over many years such as  Deposit Libraries, National Archives, Governmental  Institutions, Pharmaceuticals, Banks

Question 6: Give us your one sentence “elevator pitch” you would use to tell a non-technical person about your technology and the critical role it plays in Society.

You have an ocean of information (books, music, photos, movies, games, etc.) in one multi-layer X-ROM disks.

Question 7: Surprise Us!  What else should we know about your product/technology?

Grazing-angle incident x-ray configuration allows the handling of data from very large surface area of X-ROM disk and, consequently, the data read-out speed is much faster than in optical data read-out systems.

Additional information.

  1. X-Ray Optical Memory (X-ROM)(doc)

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