Fraunhofer Achieves 47%-Efficient Four-Junction Solar Cell: Week in Brief: 06/03/22

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LANNION, France, June 3, 2022 — Laser technology company Lumibird inked two acquisition agreements, one to acquire the Saab Group’s defense laser rangefinder business, and one to acquire Areva’s 37% stake in optics and laser company CILAS, a developer of laser weapons. Both acquisitions serve to strengthen Lumibird’s position in the European defense markets. Lumibird has served as a key component supplier for Saab for more than 15 years. Lumibird additionally formed a subsidiary in India, Lumibird Medical India. The new company aims to boost sales of Quantel Medical and Ellex products in India with a shared range of ultrasound platforms, ophthalmic lasers, and equipment for the diagnosis and treatment of dry eye.

MANCHESTER, N.H. — Allegro MicroSystems will acquire Heyday Integrated Circuits. Heyday is a privately held company specializing in compact fully integrated isolated gate drivers that enable energy conversion in high-voltage gallium nitride and silicon carbide wide-bandgap semiconductor designs. The acquisition will complement Allegro’s existing solutions for energy efficiency and serves to expand the company’s addressable market for electric vehicles, solar inverters, data center and 5G power supplies, and broad-market industrial applications.

MAYNARD, Mass. — Integrated coherent optics developer EFFECT Photonics opened its Americas Headquarters in Maynard, Mass. The facility expands the company’s engineering, product testing and verification, customer support, and marketing capacity to complement the company's European and Asia Pacific teams. It includes engineering design space, state-of-the-art application laboratory, demo space, and office space to address customer needs and the design and development of photonic solutions.

FREIBURG, Germany — Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (Fraunhofer ISE) increased the efficiency of the best four-junction solar cell to date from 46.1% to 47.6% at a concentration of 665 suns. The achievement was made possible by a new antireflection coating. The technology is part of Fraunhofer ISE’s 50 Percent project, which seeks to develop a solar cell with 50% efficiency.
Fraunhofer ISE's solar cell which achieved 47.6% efficiency. Courtesy of Fraunhofer ISE.
Fraunhofer ISE’s solar cell that achieved 47.6% efficiency. Courtesy of Fraunhofer ISE.

AMHERST, N.Y. — Allied Motion Technologies acquired FPH Group, a developer of electrical drive systems and lightweight technologies for existing and future ground-based vehicles in the defense industry. FPH also develops composites, advanced materials, and hybrid products and systems that achieve significant weight reduction and higher strength. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The acquisition is Allied Motion’s fifth in the last seven months.

TOKYO — Advantest Corp. will acquire Italy-based CREA — Collaudi Elettronici Automatizzati. CREA is a developer and producer of test equipment for power semiconductors, including the latest SiC/GaN semiconductors. This acquisition will enable Advantest to provide broader test and measurement solutions to a wider range of customers in high-growth sectors. The company will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Advantest Europe GmbH, the company's European subsidiary. Advantest’s offerings also include THz systems.

SINGAPORE — Singapore’s Quantum Engineering Programme launched three national platforms to boost the country’s capabilities in quantum computing, quantum safe communication, and the manufacturing of quantum devices. The platforms are the National Quantum Computing Hub, the National Quantum Fabless Foundry, and the National Quantum-Safe Network. The program is committing $23.5 million to the three platforms for up to 3.5 years under Singapore’s Research, Innovation, and Enterprise 2020 (RIE2020) plan. These platforms will receive further support from across the research landscape.

BOULDER, Colo. — Particle Measuring Systems will relocate its global manufacturing and commercial headquarters to the Boulder Technology Center in Niwot, Colo. The facility will house the manufacturing and business operations.

TUCSON, Ariz. — Directed energy company Applied Energetics was awarded a $3.89 million, two-year grant from the Department of the Navy, Office of Naval Research to develop an optical system capable of defeating customer-specified threats for integration onto U.S. Marine Corps platforms. The project will accelerate the development and testing of infrared optical technology with an ultrashort-pulse laser system. The overall objective will be to advance and toughen optical technologies that can be fielded on a variety of military platforms and operate under adverse conditions.

Published: June 2022
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The term quantum refers to the fundamental unit or discrete amount of a physical quantity involved in interactions at the atomic and subatomic scales. It originates from quantum theory, a branch of physics that emerged in the early 20th century to explain phenomena observed on very small scales, where classical physics fails to provide accurate explanations. In the context of quantum theory, several key concepts are associated with the term quantum: Quantum mechanics: This is the branch of...
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