Newly created firms Moria Lase SASU, Irisiome SASU and Spark Lasers have joined the Aquitaine region's photonics and optics ecosystem known as the Route des Lasers. A fourth company, Femtoeasy, is scheduled to join the competitiveness cluster in January. Aquitaine, the region with the highest research and innovation budget in France, produces 15 percent of the country's turnover in photonics, according to a 2014 market study by the French government. Moria Lase has opened an R&D center at the Institut d'Optique near Bordeaux. A subsidiary of the Moria Group, the company specializes in manufacturing medicosurgical and dental material based on pulsed IR laser technology. Irisiome has developed a medical laser that can be tuned to certain wavelengths; it will principally be used for applications in dermatology. Spark Lasers develops and manufactures innovative picosecond lasers tailored for industrial and scientific applications. Femtoeasy is a spinoff of the CELIA laboratory in Bordeaux, which has expertise in production of high-energy ultrashort pulses and metrology. CELIA (the Center for Intense Lasers and Applications) is a joint research partnership between Bordeaux University and France's Atomic Energy Commission and National Scientific Research Center. The Route des Lasers comprises 117 companies. Early stage companies focused on light-based technologies are offered structural support to facilitate growth and find business opportunities for further development through the cluster's collaborations, such as its recent partnership with tech hubs located in San Francisco and Boston. "During the last decade, we have helped create or locate close to 60 companies in the optics photonics sector,' said Hervé Floch, general manager of the Route des Lasers. Since its founding 10 years ago, the cluster has built two of the world's largest laser facilities: Laser Megajoule and the Petawatt Aquitaine Laser (PETAL), inaugurated in September. For more information, visit www.routedeslasers.com.