Arizona Optics Valley

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Founded in 1992, Optics Valley is the oldest optics, photonics, and astronomy cluster in the world. As part of the Arizona Technology Council, Optics Valley’s focus is on workforce development, the photonics ecosystem, and community and international awareness.

John Dennis

John Dennis

Working closely with the University of Arizona’s James C. Wyant College of Optical Sciences and the Department of Astronomy and Steward Observatory, its mission is to catalyze, convene, and connect optics, photonics, astronomy, and supporting business interests throughout Arizona.

Optics Valley supports a flourishing optics industry across the state with over 75 active members and has particular strengths in research and development, as well as prominence in design and manufacture of state-of-the-art equipment, instruments, and components. Moreover, regional members of the industry include specialists in optical design and software.

To help showcase the industry’s research, development, and successes, Optics Valley hosts Arizona Photonics Days, held each January in Tucson. Widely attended by members of the Global Photonics Alliance, the event has proven to be a popular destination for Arizonans and a first stop for industry professionals headed on to SPIE Photonics West.

Going forward, Optics Valley will lead the charge in expanding regional activities surrounding national and international industry events, including the International Day of Light, administered by the International Basic Sciences Programme (IBSP) of UNESCO on May 16 each year.

Ever on the lookout to advance optics awareness through thought-leadership opportunities, Optics Valley is sponsoring the keynote speaker for the Southern Arizona Tech + Business Expo. Similarly, Optics Valley will have a presence at the TENWEST Impact Festival, a southern Arizona event that runs for 10 days and helps connect those who are passionate about solving economic, social, and cultural challenges in the local community.

Optics Valley and its partners in the Arizona Optics Initiative are paving the way for continued leadership in the Arizona optics industry through innovation and entrepreneurship.

Published: September 2019
Optics Special SectionArizona Technology Council - Optics ValleyOptics Valley

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