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  • Prism Award Winners Recognized at Photonics West
Feb 2015
SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 12, 2015 — From 3-D-printed optics to novel laser systems to mobile medical diagnostics and chemical sensors, nine cutting-edge products were recognized Wednesday during the Photonics West trade show with Prism Awards for Photonics Innovation.

Sponsored by Photonics Media and SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, the awards have been presented annually since 2009 in recognition of light-based technology products that solve problems and improve quality of life.

The winners were chosen by a panel of expert judges and announced by presenters from leading photonics companies during a gala dinner attended by 340 industry guests.

Dr. Klaus Weishaupt of Witec
Dr. Klaus Weishaupt, left, Witec's managing director of marketing and sales, accepts the 2015 Prism Award for metrology instrumentation. Also pictured are Jeff Streger of Tescan U.S.A. Inc., Radomir Kopriva of Tescan Orsay Holding AS and Steve Rapp of Witec Instruments Corp. Courtesy of Witec.

“This year — during the United Nations’ International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies — it is especially fitting to recognize and celebrate the remarkable ability of photonics to enable solutions to the world’s challenges,” said SPIE CEO Dr. Eugene Arthurs. “Ours is an industry of creative minds, and the Prism Awards give us an opportunity to celebrate some of the most outstanding among those.”

“Everyone outside this room doesn’t really know the word photonics, but it’s starting to get around, it’s starting to get seen, and we’re glad to be part of it,” said Photonics Media Vice President and Sales Director Ryan F. Laurin.

Winners in each category are:

Additive manufacturing: Dutch firm Luxexcel’s Printoptical technology enables on-demand printing of plastic optical components and lenses using machinery that jets individual UV-curable material droplets.

Biomedical instrumentation: Bacterioscan of St. Louis created the Laser Microbial Growth Monitor, a low-cost method of measuring bacteria in fluids at concentrations below the limit of detection of other state-of-the-art technologies.

Detectors and sensors: A microspectrometer from Hamamatsu of Japan (the C12666MA) is a fingertip-sized component consisting of a grating chip and CMOS image sensor for handheld measurement devices in point-of-care testing and color measurement applications.

Imaging and cameras: The Seek Thermal smartphone accessory from Seek Thermal of Santa Barbara, Calif., and Raytheon allows capture and sharing of thermal photos and videos.

Industrial lasers: A 500-W quasi-CW green single-mode fiber laser from IPG Photonics of Oxford, Mass., (the GLPN-500-R) is suited for industrial applications from copper welding to solar cell manufacturing.

Materials and coatings: Stilbene scintillation crystals from Inrad Optics of Northvale, N.J., glow in the presence of fast neutrons, enabling next-generation security, scientific and industrial systems.

Optics and optical components: Intel, Corning and US Conec jointly developed the MXC Connector, a parallel optical connector designed for data centers that supports up to 64 fibers for a total carrying capacity of 1.6 Tbps.

Other metrology instrumentation: The Rise microscopy system from Witec of Germany and Tescan Orsay of the Czech Republic combines Raman spectroscopy and scanning electron functions for sample characterization.

Scientific lasers: The WhiteLase SC400-20 supercontinuum tunable fiber laser source from Fianium Ltd. of England produces high power output across the visible and near-infrared spectrum for applications ranging from medicine to electronic devices.

For more information, visit

thermal imaging
The process of producing a visible two-dimensional image of a scene that is dependent on differences in thermal or infrared radiation from the scene reaching the aperture of the imaging device.
The science of measurement, particularly of lengths and angles.
raman spectroscopy
That branch of spectroscopy concerned with Raman spectra and used to provide a means of studying pure rotational, pure vibrational and rotation-vibration energy changes in the ground level of molecules. Raman spectroscopy is dependent on the collision of incident light quanta with the molecule, inducing the molecule to undergo the change.  
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