Wider focus brings expansion for opto specialist - Embedded.com

Wider focus brings expansion for opto specialist

Glasgow, UK — A successful broadening of its focus from the telecommunications sector to include the printing and defence markets has lead optoelectronic chip maker, Intense Photonics, to expand its workforce and facilities.

Headcount has gone from 50 in late 2003 to 65 today, and the expansion trend is expected to continue throughout 2004, with most additions in engineering and production technician roles. It has also added some 500sq m of office space with a new mezzanine floor, and extended clean-room facilities for wafer fabrication, test and packaging by around 25%. The company was formed in 2000 and operates a Class 1 capable clean room near Glasgow in Scotland.

David Lockwood, CEO at Intense said, “Optical integrated circuits are a platform for progress for many industry sectors, not just telecoms, and our broader focus is opening up significant new markets for our core technology. Intense's unique manufacturing process and our investment in an optical wafer fab makes us one of a tiny handful of companies worldwide that are able to deliver state-of-the-art optoelectronics to early-adopter OEMs.”

The company uses a quantum well intermixing (QWI) process for fabricating optical chips. This proprietary process allows multiple optical functions to be fabricated in a single processing stage, for reliable high-yield production

Neil Weston, Intense's president of sales and marketing, said, “We are already commencing production of laser arrays for printing applications. By switching to semiconductor technology in place of traditional optically-pumped solid-state lasers, we are helping OEMs in this sector to make exceptional gains in terms of size, cost and power consumption. Intense is also working on laser array designs for clients in the defence sector, and we expect to start volume production for at least one of these projects later in 2004.”

Telecoms remains a focus for Intense, and the company expects the upturn to stimulate demand for its multi-function optical IC concepts: the broadband electro-absorption modulator (EAM). See also:

Intense wins defence laser development contract

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