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Photonics Spectra: July 2014

FEATURES
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Positioning Systems Advances Could Herald Smart-Factory Era
Optical positioning systems could be at the forefront of carrying factories into the fourth industrial revolution. Positioning systems are essential to ensure precision engineering in a number of manufacturing industries from lithography and inspection to calibration, measurement and testing. And the semiconductor industry places the biggest demand on such systems by far. ...
Marie Freebody, Contributing Editor, marie.freebody@photonics.com
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Slow Light: Moving Out of the Lab
When put into practical use, slow-light-enhanced technologies will improve the performance of photonic networks and optical sensors. Photonic crystals will play a key role in the transition, as they...
Dr. Michael E. Holmes, Toptica Photonics Inc., and Mohammad Mirhosseini and Dr. Robert Boyd, University of Rochester
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A Better Small View Can Yield a Big Impact
Microscopy is a key tool in materials science, especially in the development of new and better materials, and microscopy methods keep advancing. As things get smaller, faster and cheaper, the...
Hank Hogan, Contributing Editor, hank.hogan@photonics.com
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Novel Laser-Power Sensor Improves Process Control
A new type of laser-power detector delivers fast speed and high laser-damage resistance, enabling real-time process control in embedded systems. Lasers process a wide range of materials in an...
Sean Bergman, Coherent Inc.
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Optical Filters Open Up New Uses for MWIR, LWIR Systems
The future for photonics imaging is bright in a previously dark wavelength regime: The ability to image ‘invisible’ features such as thermal profiles, gases and other environmental...
Jason Palidwar, Iridian Spectral Technologies


EDITORIAL
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Light Refreshments Will Be Served
In less than six months, people everywhere will anxiously await the ball drop or other symbolic event signaling the start of 2015. It seems fitting that the International Year of Light will be ushered in by fireworks and laser light shows from Paris to New York to Sydney. Who knows – there may even be “vodka served as a flash of light” – à la Parks and Recreation...
Karen A. Newman, Group Publisher, karen.newman@photonics.com


WORKFORCE OF TOMORROW
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Hands-on program ‘makes waves’ with kids
There’s no need to make science exciting for kids – it’s already exciting. Educators just need to show them. That was the goal of the yearlong Making Waves: Optics and Acoustics program, which brought together students from three school districts in eastern Connecticut to explore the idea that understanding science can make a better artist and that cultivating the arts...


TECH PULSE
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Nanostructures Show Promise for Efficient LEDs
Nanostructures and an indium nitride (InN) semiconductor could hold promise for improving the efficiency of LEDs, particularly in the green gap, where productivity typically takes a dive. Researchers from the University of Michigan conducted tests at the US Department of Energy's National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center using the Cray XC30 supercomputer. They discovered that...
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Plasmonic Tunneling Enables Ultrafast Circuits
A marriage of photonics and nanostructures could enable a huge leap in computer processing speed. A new technique using plasmonic tunneling has allowed researchers to create electrical...
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Frequency Combs Speed Up Data Transmission
Using frequency combs as an optical source could speed up communications by allowing coherent transmission of data streams of several terabits per second over hundreds of kilometers. A team...
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Laser Process Allows Precision Design of Nanospheres
A laser-based technique for creating light-scattering silicon nanospheres could have applications in medicine and sensor technology. Molten silicon forms nanoparticles which, due to...
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Long-Range 3-D Lidar Could Enhance Military Ops
Advancement of 3-D imaging and lidar technologies could spell significant enhancement for target identification, tracking and surveillance, namely in military operations. A team at Selex ES...
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Two-Stage Laser Could Make Rain, Lightning
Weather is beyond human control — or is it? A team from the University of Central Florida (UCF) College of Optics & Photonics and the University of Arizona are developing a...
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Mid-IR Lens Incorporates Waste Sulfur
Thin, inexpensive plastic lenses for IR imaging devices can be manufactured from waste sulfur generated by refining fossil fuels. The plastic is transparent to wavelengths from 3 to 5...
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Electricity Changes Polymer’s Optical Properties
A newly developed polymer is said to be the first of its kind to combine optical and electrical properties. This could mean new manufacturing possibilities for glass, polarization filters and sensors...
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Stress Activates Light-Emitting Nanowires
Stretching and compressing gallium arsenide nanowires switches their light emission on and off, respectively.  Enabled by the material’s hexagonal wurtzite structure, this discovery...
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Solid-State UV Lamp Presents Sterilization Alternative
A new solid-state UV lamp could provide a cheaper and safer option for surface sterilization. Developed by a team from the Nagoya Institute of Technology, the lamp is said to achieve the...
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Fluorescent Hybrid Changes Color with Polarization
A fluorescent hybrid material that changes color based on light polarization could enhance a number of applications in nanotechnologies. Creating this material required a host inorganic...


LIGHT SPEED
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Dramatic Growth Projected for PIC Market
The photonic integrated circuit (PIC) market should see significant growth over the next five years at an annual rate of 31.3 percent, according to a new report by Transparency Market Research. ...
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Fiber Lens Market to Grow 45% Per Year
The global market for fiber optic collimating lens assemblies is projected to grow at 45 percent per year through 2018, according to a study by ElectroniCast Consultants. The global...
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NIST Awards Manufacturing Grants
Two projects aimed at advancing photonics manufacturing have been awarded grants from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) through its Advanced Manufacturing Technology Consortia...
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DEEPEN Project to Boost Device Development
A new test environment is being planned to facilitate the creation of next-generation photonic and electronic devices. A team of researchers from throughout Europe is working to develop the...
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Microspectrometer Earns Plaudits at Trade Show
Horiba Scientific’s MicOS Microscope Optical Spectrometer was named “One of the Best New Instruments of the Year 2013” at the Annual Conference of China Scientific Instruments in...
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3 Questions Interview
Optics education advocate Judy Donnelly might have retired recently, but she won’t let that slow down her efforts to advance science and learning. Donnelly won the 2012 Esther Hoffman...


GREENLIGHT
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UV Takes Water Treatment Chemical-Free
A new UV process quickly breaks down pollutants in wastewater without help from chemical catalysts. The system uses 172-nm light to trigger photolysis, splitting H2O molecules into highly reactive hydroxyl radicals. “These hydroxyl compounds have an even higher reaction potential than atomic oxygen, for example,” said Siegfried Egner, head of the Physical Process...


LIGHTER SIDE
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Moving Mother Nature Indoors
Artificial light is not pretty. Spending time under the harsh fluorescence of office, hospital or store lighting can be straining on the eyes and draining on morale. Leaning back in your office chair or hospital bed, or in the checkout line, enclosed from every angle, you would do just about anything to feel the sun on your face. Soon, thanks to a project funded by the European Commission, you...


PROFILE
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Novel Laser-Power Sensor Improves Process Control
A new type of laser-power detector delivers fast speed and high laser-damage resistance, enabling real-time process control in embedded systems. Lasers process a wide range of materials in an extraordinarily diverse array of applications that often share a common requirement: the need to regularly measure laser output characteristics such as average power, pulse energy, pulse shape or...
Sean Bergman, Coherent Inc.


PRODUCTS
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UV Laser
Spectra-Physics, a Newport company, has released the Quasar 355-60 UV laser for microelectronic device manufacturing. The device offers >60 W, pulse energies >300 µJ,...
Spectra-Physics
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DPSS Laser
RPMC Lasers has introduced Bright Solutions’ SOL diode-dumped solid-state (DPSS) laser for applications including plastics and metals marking and machining, lidar and rangefinding, and...
RPMC Lasers Inc.
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RF Photonic Transmitter
Pharad has added the PTX-030-500 radio-frequency photonic transmitter and the PRX-030-500 radio-frequency (RF) photonic receiver to its family of RF over Fiber products, which are suitable for...
Pharad, LLC
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Spectral Identification
KnowItAll ATR/IR ID Expert and Raman ID Expert software from Bio-Rad Laboratories Inc. uses IR and Raman spectroscopy to identify unknown compounds. The software, which accesses the...
Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc., Informatics Div.
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Miniature Encoder
Atom, Renishaw Inc.’s new noncontact optical linear and rotary incremental encoder, combines miniaturization with dirt immunity and signal stability for applications including laser scanning,...
Renishaw Inc.
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Surgical Microscopes
Carl Zeiss Meditec has unveiled the OPMI Lumera 700 and Rescan 700, surgical microscopes that feature integrated intraoperative OCT. Designed for ophthalmic surgeons, it provides...
Carl Zeiss Meditec AG
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Micromachining System
IPG Photonics Corp. has introduced the IX-200-F, a fiber laser micromachining system for general-purpose, R&D and batch-scale production applications. The multifunction system can be...
IPG Photonics Corporation
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Low Noise Input Cables
Femto Messtechnik GmbH’s low-noise input cables, available from Electro Optical Components Inc., minimize triboelectric and microphonic noise for its signal recovery amplifiers. ...
Femto Messtechnik GmbH
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2-D Semiconductor Detector
Rigaku Corporation’s HyPix-3000, a 2-D semiconductor detector, has a large active area of 3000 mm² and a small pixel size of 100 μm² to ensure high spatial resolution. As...
Rigaku Americas Corp.
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Hybrid Fractional Laser
Sciton Inc.’s Halo, a hybrid fractional laser, applies tunable ablative and nonablative wavelengths in a single pass to maximize results and reduce downtime. Two functions provide...
Sciton, Inc.
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Stabilized Imaging
Hood Tech Vision has introduced the Alticam 05-EO5 Camera Turret, a stabilized imaging system for unmanned vehicles. The device’s gimbal system features low size, weight (0.75 kg) and...
HoodTech Vision, Stabilized Imaging Systems
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AOTF-NIR Spectrometer
Brimrose Corp. has introduced the Luminar 4060 spectrometer for various applications in test and measurement. The new device features a scanning speed of 16,000 wavelengths per second, touch...
Brimrose Corporation of America
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FTIR Scanner
Oriel Instruments, a Newport Corp. company, introduces the 8035 Fourier Transform-Infrared scanner for imaging and spectroscopy applications. The device features a 1.5-inch beam for higher...
Oriel Instruments
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Spectrometer System
The SP2100 Spectral Reflectometer from Verity Instruments is designed for film thickness measurement of in-situ and inline applications. Consisting of a high-performance spectrometer and...
Verity Instruments, Inc.
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Thermoelectric Coolers
Elite Thermal Engineering has introduced the OCP-300L thermoelectric cooling plate and HS-004L high-power heat sink for laboratory and OEM applications. The OCP-300L offers 300 W of...
Elite Thermal Engineering, LLC
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UV Fiber Lasers
AMS Technologies has announced the PUFL series of UV fiber lasers, a line of 355-nm laser sources from Keopsys.. Based on the combination of a 1.0-µm fiber laser and a compact...
AMS Technologies AG
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Ultrasonic Sensors
Pepperl+Fuchs has introduced Series IO Ultrasonic Sensors, a line of IO-Link compatible sensors with pushbutton programming for on-site parameterization. IO-Link and Pactware software can be...
Pepperl+Fuchs Inc.
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Laser Diode System
Frankfurt Laser Co. has introduced the FLC300 laser diode system for applications in fiber optic communications. The new system delivers fiber output power of 2 mW to 300 W, and wavelengths...
Frankfurt Laser Company
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Probe System
Mitutoyo America Corp. has introduced the Renishaw PH20 probe system, to accompany the Crysta-Apex S500/700/900 series Coordinate Measuring Machines, for test and measurement applications. ...
Mitutoyo America Corp.
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Blue Laser System
The Model 87100 blue laser turnkey system from Laser Light Solutions delivers 100 W from a 1-mm, 0.22-NA fiber. With 445-nm performance from a DDL source, the system’s critical...
Laser Light Solutions
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Galvo Scanner Option
Laser Mechanisms has introduced a galvo scanner option for laser applications. It offers high speed and accuracy in a compact package. Available for up to 20-mm diameter beams, the unit...
Laser Mechanisms, Inc.
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Measurement System
4D Technology has added a suite of components for measuring 300-mm-diameter optics. The AccuFiz series includes a 4-in.-aperture interferometer, a 100- to 300-mm beam expander for horizontal or...
4D Technology Corp.

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