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Study Predicts Florida Photonics Boom
Sep 1999
ORLANDO, Fla., Sept. 14 -- Florida's laser and optics companies can look forward to a bright future, according to a report issued by the University of Central Florida (UCF). The industry-sponsored study expects the state's photonics-based firms to add 2900 new jobs as their revenues increase by 25 percent over the next five years. With 106 laser and optics companies in Florida's 13-county high-tech corridor, the study found the state to be among the top regions in the country to attract photonics companies, following California, Arizona and the Northeast.
The study was commissioned by the Florida High-Tech Corridor Council Inc. and was conducted by researchers at the University of South Florida (USF). Both UCF and USF offer classes in laser and optics technologies. UCF's School of Optics, which opened in January, evolved from its Center for Research & Education in Optics and Lasers (CREOL). CREOL is credited with playing a key role in the growth of Central Florida's laser and optics industry, which now includes several thousand employees at close to 100 companies.

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