VCSELence Torino Opens; QDI Systems Secures €5M in Series A: Week in Brief: 1/19/24

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GRONINGEN, The Netherlands, Jan. 19, 2024 — QDI Systems, a developer of imaging devices for medical applications, has secured €5 million ($5.4 million) in series A funding. The company, a 2019 spinoff of the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials at the University of Groningen, will use the funds to commercialize its quantum dot-based imaging technology and to pursue SWIR-based technology. The funding also includes an innovation loan of €1.97 million ($2.1 million) from the Netherlands Enterprise Agency. The funding round was led by the Investment and Development Agency for the Northern Netherlands and joined by previous investors Carduso Capital, RuG Ventures, and Nordic venture capital fund

FREMONT, Calif. — Optical components manufacturer Enablence Technologies has signed a strategic agreement with semiconductor manufacturer Polar Semiconductor to develop and manufacture optical chips. The partnership grants Enablence access to Polar’s production processes and tool sets, which Enablence CEO Todd Haugen noted would help to accelerate development and release of new products. The partnership also enables Polar to expand its footprint within the optoelectronics market, which the company sees as a strategic growth segment. 

ESPOO, Finland — Nokia has launched Nokia Federal Solutions (NFS), a dedicated entity focused on delivering secure and innovative solutions to the U.S. federal government. NFS will leverage Nokia’s technology portfolio underpinned by Nokia Bell Labs to address the needs of U.S. federal agencies across diverse missions by providing products and services including IP routing, optical networking, microwave, 5G, private wireless, and tactical private wireless.

The VCSELence Torino Center of Excellence will investigate uses of VCSEL technology. Courtesy of CNR-IEIIT.
The VCSELence Torino Center of Excellence will investigate uses of VCSEL technology. Courtesy of CNR-IEIIT. 
TORINO, Italy — The VCSELence Torino Center of Excellence has been established in northern Italy with the goal of investigating the use of VCSEL technology for applications in high-speed optical fiber data transmission links and in optical sensing. The center is supported by groups including the Department of Electronics and Telecommunication at Politecnico di Torino and CNR-IEIIT, and is currently offering modeling, design, characterization, and system testing through collaborations with technologically driven and application-oriented groups. 

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Optical technology company Windstream Wholesale and Cisco have transmitted a 1-Tbps wavelength over a 1100-km link across multiple routes on Windstream’s intelligent converged optical network (ICON). The trial results, Windstream said, emphasize that disaggregated networking can be implemented successfully on production networks and demonstrate that interoperability between a vendor's transponder and a third-party line system is achievable.

BARRINGTON, N.J. — Edmund Optics, a provider of optical technology solutions, has announced the recipients of its 2023 Educational Awards and Norman Edmund Award. The gold awards for education were given to Danilo Almeida Machado at Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais, Brazil; and Jelle Schoppink at the University of Twente, Netherlands, for their work with telecentric optic systems and laser-induced cavitation in microfluidics. The Norman Edmund award was given to Dilara Long at the University of Arizona for developing a miniature minimally invasive endoscope for endometriosis diagnosis.

SAN JOSE, Calif. — Tandem PV, a perovskite solar technology company, has raised an additional $6 million, bringing its total to $27 million in venture capital and government support. The company will use the funds to advance research and development and plans to build its first manufacturing facility. The funding round was led by existing investor Planetary Technologies with participation from Uncorrelated Ventures and Tom Werner, former chairman, president, and CEO of SunPower Corp.

Q-Ctrl’s quantum magnetometer. Courtesy of Q-CTRL.
Q-CTRL’s quantum magnetometer. Courtesy of Q-CTRL.
LOS ANGELES — Quantum Technologies developer Q-CTRL has entered into a partnership with the United States Geological Survey (USGS) to explore potential quantum computing and sensing applications for geological sciences. The collaboration is established under a formal Cooperative Research and Development Agreement and will utilize sophisticated quantum techniques, such as quantum gravimetry, quantum magnetometry, and quantum-enhanced logistics optimization in order to deliver insights to solve previously intractable problems.

AMAGASAKI, Japan — A.M. Fitzgerald & Associates LLC, a MEMS developer, and Sumitomo Precision Products Co. Ltd.’s MEMS Infinity, which offers a full-service MEMS silicon wafer foundry, have entered into a strategic alliance to expedite the commercialization of thin-film PZT MEMS chip technologies. PZT is a versatile piezoelectric material used in MEMS sensors for applications such as AR, VR, haptics, and lidar.

Ferrotec executives at the grand opening ceremony to start production of its Kedah manufacturing facility. Courtesy of Ferrotec Holdings Corporation.
Ferrotec executives at the grand opening ceremony to start production of its Kedah manufacturing facility. Courtesy of Ferrotec Holdings Corporation.
KEDAH, Malaysia — Ferrotec Holdings Corporation, a supplier of precision system solutions, has started production on a manufacturing facility at Kulim Hi-Tech Park, Kedah, facilitated by the Malaysian Investment Development Authority. The plant will be undertaking electromechanical assembly and advanced material fabrication for semiconductor equipment in order to meet demand while expanding the company's global footprint.

Published: January 2024
BusinessfundingpartnershipsalliancesagreementsEuropeAmericasAsia PacificFerrotecA.M. FitzgerladSumitomoQ-CTRLTandem PVEdmund OpticsQDI SystemsNokiaCiscoWindstream

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