Archive for June 2014

Semrock markets newest fluorescence filter sets

June 24, 2014

Seven new fluorescence filter sets optimized for LED light engines are now available from Idex Corp.’s Semrock brand.

New fluorescence filter sets are available from Semrock

Semrock Inc. announces its newest fluorescence filter sets, compatible with most popular LED light sources.

The filters are optimized for use with most popular LED light sources on the market today and are available in single-band, full and Pinkel multiband configurations. All configurations are available preassembled in a microscope cube. The new filter sets can be used for theoretical modeling using the Semrock Searchlight online toolbox, and are  in stock and ready for next-day shipping. Rapid delivery is available on custom-sized filters. Additional LED light engine optimized sets will be added to Semrock’s product line throughout the summer.

Semrock Inc. manufactures high-volume optical filters used for the biotech and analytical instrumentation industries, along with filters for more general laser and optical systems applications.

For more information visit

Rochester region aims to boost economy with growing photonics industry

June 15, 2014

Rochester has a leg up on other areas trying to capitalize on the growing photonics industry.

“Rochester has been, since 1853, since the founding of Bausch + Lomb, the center of the optics industry in the United States,” said Paul Ballentine, deputy director of the Center for Emerging and Innovative Sciences at the University of Rochester. “We don’t want to say we are trying to get on the map, that would be a grave injustice to the community.”

In the area, photonics and related fields such as optics and imagining account for about 17,000 jobs at more than 75 companies. Statewide, the industry supports more than 25,000 jobs at 300 companies across New York state. The global market is about $500 billion with the Finger Lakes region accounting for about 1 percent of that market.

The optics industry is “morphing into something more broad called photonics,” Ballentine said.

“We have to continue to evolve and get more into opto-electronics and things like that. That is where we have a very concerted effort.”

– Paul Ballentine, Deputy Director, U of R Center for Emerging and Innovative Sciences

The effort is tied to President Barack Obama’s plan to rebuild manufacturing in the United States. Rochester has competed in three programs so far and has been among the winners in each — receiving millions of dollars in grants and recognition that will likely deliver even more funding and support to the photonics industry. Rochester will be in the running for a fourth and possibly most significant program — the creation of a National Institute for Manufacturing Education devoted to optics and photonics.

“We’re batting a thousand here,” Ballentine said.

Thomas Battley, executive director of the Rochester Regional Photonics Cluster (RRPC) said the optics and photonics industries in the area are in a transition period, shifting away from giant manufacturing firms like Eastman Kodak Co., Xerox Corp. and Bausch + Lomb Inc.

The local industry now consists of smaller companies that don’t have the same resources or staffing to do the needed research and development. That’s why it’s important to attract government funding and land new companies to develop the industry, experts say.

“How do we get the nation to recognize that Rochester is not some place that big companies all left, and see it as a place where they ought to make investments and grow?” Battley said. “That’s the gold ring right there. That’s what we’re trying to figure out.”

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Lumetrics ships latest lens inspection system

June 13, 2014

The newest intraocular lens inspection system from Lumetrics is headed to a major U.S.  manufacturer this month.

Lumetrics has shipped the CrystalWave 765, the latest in the company's line of Intraocular and contact lens inspection systems

Lumetrics has shipped CrystalWave 765, the latest in the company’s line of intraocular and contact lens inspection systems

Lumetrics has shipped its CrystalWave 765, the latest design in the RRPC member’s CrystalWave line of  intraocular (IOL) and contact lens inspection systems. CrystalWave systems are used by the major IOL manufacturers in the world as well as the FDA. Focal length, wavefront and MTF measurements are combined in a single instrument to minimize handling of the lenses.

The CrystalWave 765 system allows lenses to be inspected either wet or dry and can be configured either horizontally or vertically for inspection.  The new system can incorporate Lumetrics’  latest IOL rotating cuvette. The cuvette rotates each IOL and allows the axis reading on the CrystalWave to be a direct measurement of cylinder axis error. This measurement is critical, especially as newer, more complex lenses are designed for use in patients.

The CrystalWave K765 also supports production line installations and is insensitive to vibrations. The measurement zone accepts a single IOL or multiple IOLs in a carousel. The optional CrystalServer software allows user-written programs to control CrystalWave in coordination with robotic equipment for fully automated inspection.

With the recent addition of products acquired from Abbott Medical Optics, Lumetrics provides wavefront analysis of IOL and contact lenses, and laser beams in industry, government and independent research labs.  The systems provide real-time measurements to improve quality, reduce costs and increase yields.

For more information, visit


To Aid the Blind, an Assist From Cameras

June 10, 2014

Rochester is Home to ABVI, The Association for the Blind or Visually Impaired.

Imagine the Possibilities this Thursday with ABVI, HTR and Your RRPC Colleagues.

Here are some possibilities to rattle your thinking:

In two labs some 50 miles apart in Israel, computer scientists and engineers are refining devices that employ tiny cameras as translators of sorts. For both teams, the goal is to give blind people a form of sight — or at least an experience analogous to sight.


JML Optical CFO DiSalvo is selected as finalist for Financial Executive of the Year

June 9, 2014

Len DiSalvo’s contributions to JML Optical Industries as the company’s CFO,  and to the Rochester community as a whole,  have placed him as a finalist for the Financial Executive of the Year award, sponsored by the Rochester Business Journal and Financial Executives International.

JML Optical CFO DiSalvo named Financial Executive of the Year finalist

JML Optical Industries CFO Len DiSalvo is Financial Executive of the Year finalist

In addition to finance and accounting, DiSalvo is responsible for human resources and information technology functions at JML Optical, which is a leading designer and manufacturer of custom precision optical components, assemblies and systems for use in the defense, medical diagnostic, life sciences, semiconductor, metrology and biometrics industries.

Prior to joining JML, DiSalvo  held the positions of CFO and Vice President for Finance for Harbinger Group Inc., formerly Zapata Corp., managing acquisition and divestiture activities and serving on the board of directors of the company’s publicly traded majority-owned subsidiaries. There, he directed the creation and eventual spin-off of an internet subsidiary. DiSalvo has also held financial positions at Constellation Brands and Bausch + Lomb, Inc.

“Len has been at the heart of JML’s successful transition from a sole proprietorship to a growth company with private equity and broader management ownership,” said JML CEO and President Bob Bicksler.  “Also under Len’s leadership and direct involvement, our customers will soon benefit from a new, state-of-the-art ERP system that is now being implemented.”

DiSalvo contributes to the wider Rochester community by serving as a board member of the Rochester Technology & Manufacturing Council, and as a member of the Nazareth College financial advisory council.



Sydor Instruments wins DOE SBIR grant

June 5, 2014

Acquisition of data in complex x-ray studies could improve 100-fold over existing technology with the help of an $833,000 federal grant awarded this week to Sydor Instruments.

sydorlogoIIThe company will use the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant, awarded through the U.S. Department of Energy, to complete the technology transfer of a novel microstrip detector,  in collaboration with Brookhaven National Laboratory. The detector is designed to be highly effective at acquiring count rates, energy resolution and spatial resolution data. Commercialization of the detector will allow researchers to advance discovery in a number of areas, among them nanoscale material science, structure-based drug design and environmental remediation of contamination sites.

“We are very pleased with being awarded this SBIR Phase IIB grant and would like to thank Brookhaven National Lab for its partnership and collaboration during this process,” said Sydor Instruments President Michael Pavia.  “This grant from the Department of Energy reinforces the importance of completing the technology transfer of this microstrip detector and positioning it for immediate commercial deployment.  By acquiring data at many points, the quality and quantity of data will be improved 100-fold from the current state-of-the-art.”

The SBIR program is a highly competitive program that encourages domestic small businesses to engage in federal research/research and development  that has the potential for commercialization. Through a competitive awards-based program, SBIR enables small businesses to explore their technological potential and provides the incentive to profit from its commercialization. According to the Small Business Administration, 11 federal agencies currently participate in the program, which is open to businesses with fewer than 500 employees.

For more information on the SBIR program, go to

Visit Sydor Instruments at



Photonics Technology Makes the Cut on New Request For Information

June 4, 2014

“If China shuts off the flow of glass, the United States will be out of drones in six months.”
– CEO of a critical components contractor to the DoD

It was anticipated and heavily lobbied for.  Does it look like anyone expected?

On Monday, June 2nd, the Department of the Air Force, through Air Force Material Command (Wright Patterson) issued a request for information (RFI) seeking input from Industry and Academia as part of an effort to select and scope the technology focus areas for future Institutes for Manufacturing Innovation (IMIs).

The NNMI program was announced by president Obama in 2012.  Unable to budget the money to fund the hallmark manufacturing initiative, the administration has turned to various DOD and government agencies to fund NMI’s on its behalf.  This is the first from Air Force Material Command.

Responses are due by July 14th.

Technology areas of focus:

  • Flexible Hybrid Electronics
  • Photonics
  • Engineered Nanomaterials
  • Fiber and Textiles
  • Electronic Packaging and Reliability
  • Aerospace Composites

Many of us are elated that photonics made the cut.  Hundreds of hours of work, lobbying and thousands of dollars in travel have resulted in Photonics being on the short list for this NMI.  What is not clear is if the White House and the DoD recognize the critical role that optics, photonics and imaging technologies play to our national security.  Interpretations will vary.

From the RFI:

The term “photonics” refers specifically to technologies for generating, transmitting, modulating, filtering, processing, switching, amplifying, attenuating and detecting light.  Photonics technologies encompass significant commercial industries and solutions for DoD unique applications.  The diverse photonics industry has a number of manufacturing approaches where a public-private investment could rapidly accelerate the technology availability from TRL 4 to TRL 6/7 and enable a sustainable industry for commercial and DoD needs.  A photonics IMI would address industrial base issues for photonics materials, such as infrared materials, nonlinear materials, low-dimensional materials, and engineered materials which are critical to our Nation’s photonics ecosystem (production, DoD, research, etc….).  A Photonics IMI could be structured to allow improvements in the cross-cutting disciplines of design, packaging, reliability and test to be applied across multiple technology topic areas leveraging common manufacturing approaches.  Preference could be given to technology topic areas that are in late stage research and development, that may require some design/foundry efforts, but the bulk of the efforts are in the packaging, reliability and test disciplines, increasing the probability that the technology will mature and transition to DoD weapon systems and/or commercial platforms in 3-5 years and enabling the institute to be self-sustaining in the 5-7 year timeframe.

Although much research and development on photonics has been done in the U.S., it has been primarily carried out by large corporations developing and using proprietary processes for application-driven designs.  Little coordination and cooperation has existed between companies.  As a result, U.S.-based photonics research and development is faced with several disadvantages:

    1. There is no common or generic component library or fabrication process.  There are almost as many technologies as photonics companies.
    2. For most potential new applications, the market is too small for payback of investments without cooperative development. 

Photonic technologies are commonly used in the high speed transmission of signals in telecommunications and high-performance information-processing systems.  In addition photonics technologies are used in high-performance information-processing systems and computing.  Finally photonic technologies are commonly used in sensors and imagers.

A lot of players around the country will be very busy crafting their responses in the next month.