Archive for October 2015

Cuomo Announces Board to Coordinate State Investments with Photonics Institute

October 30, 2015

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the appointments for the board of officers to coordinate New York State’s significant financial investments with the National Manufacturing Innovation Institute for Integrated Photonics. First announced by Vice President Biden and Governor Cuomo in July, the Integrated Photonics Institute will help secure the nation’s leadership in emerging technology research, development, and manufacturing.

“The Photonics Institute is going to redefine the local economy for generations – and this Board of Officers will play a pivotal role in guiding that change day in and day out,” said Governor Cuomo. “Each of these individuals has a background and skillset that will be incredibly valuable in supporting the Institute as it develops, and helping it cement Rochester’s status as a global hub for research and advanced manufacturing.”

The board of officers consists of seven members who represent a wide array of business, programmatic, and technical expertise.

The Governor of New York State appoints the Chairman and two additional members; SUNY Poly Institute appoints two members; and the Rochester Institute of Technology and University of Rochester each appoint one member.

The Photonics Institute Board of Officers is comprised of:

  • Andrew Kennedy, Chair (Governor appointee)
  • Anne Kress (Governor appointee)
  • Alexander Cartwright (Governor appointee)
  • Ronald Goldblatt (SUNY Poly appointee)
  • Paul Tolley (SUNY Poly appointee)
  • Ryne Raffaele (RIT appointee)
  • Rob Clark (U of R appointee)

Andrew Kennedy serves as the Deputy Director of State Operations overseeing the day-to-day management of state government. Previously, Mr. Kennedy served as the Governor’s Assistant Secretary for Economic Development coordinating the development and management of the State’s economic development and housing efforts. Prior to joining the Governor’s staff, Andrew worked over a decade at the New York State Division of Budget and for the New York State Assembly where he developed a detailed understanding of New York’s fiscal and economic development policies and programs. Mr. Kennedy holds a master’s degree in Public Administration from the Nelson A. Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy and a bachelor’s degree from Siena College in Political Science.

Anne M. Kress has served as president of Monroe Community College in Rochester, New York since 2009. Her career spans more than 20 years in higher education with special interests in topics relating to student access and success, global education, workforce development, technology, and the intersection between traditional liberal education and essential 21st century learning outcomes.

Kress currently serves on New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Council and has been involved in state higher education policy in New York and Florida. Locally, she serves on the boards of the Rochester Business Alliance, Greater Rochester Enterprise, United Way of Greater Rochester, and the Hillside Work-Scholarship Connection. Kress has been honored by the New York State Senate as a Woman of Distinction, by the Women’s Council of the Rochester Business Alliance with its Athena Award, and by the Rochester YWCA with its Empowering Women award. Nationally, she serves on boards, commissions, and councils for organizations including the League for Innovation in the Community College, AACC, ACE, ETS and the Council on Foreign Relations, and is a frequent presenter at national conferences and meetings.

She earned a doctorate in higher education administration, master’s and bachelor’s degrees in English, and a bachelor’s degree with honors in finance all from the University of Florida. In 2012, Kress was named an outstanding alumna by the University of Florida’s Institute of Higher Education.

Dr. Alexander N. Cartwright was appointed Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor by the SUNY Trustees as of September 15, 2014 and named Interim President of the Research Foundation for SUNY on January 23, 2014. He is the chief academic officer of the SUNY system, supporting the Chancellor and Board of Trustees in carrying out their oversight responsibilities of the 64-campus system.

An internationally recognized researcher and scholar in the area of optical sensors, Dr. Cartwright most recently served as Vice President for Research and Economic Development at the University at Buffalo, the State University of New York (SUNY Buffalo) and the Acting Executive Director of the New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences. In these roles, he was responsible for campus/industry relations, research funding and compliance, research communications and research support for SUNY Buffalo and the Center.

Dr. Cartwright previously served as the Chair of both the Electrical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering Departments at SUNY Buffalo. Before beginning these concurrent chairmanships, Dr. Cartwright led the institution’s efforts to synergize research across disciplines as the Vice Provost for Strategic Initiatives. In this position he oversaw infrastructure and scholarship in eight areas of strategic strength that spanned departments from Visual Studies to Medicine. He has served as a professor in Electrical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering and an adjunct full professor in Physics at SUNY Buffalo. His excellence in teaching earned him the SUNY Chancellor’s award for Excellence in Teaching in 2002. Dr. Cartwright retains his rank as full professor. Dr. Cartwright holds a Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Iowa.

Dr. Ronald Goldblatt leads the SUNY Poly SEMATECH Global Innovation Initiative and is responsible for driving the ongoing integration of SEMATECH with SUNY Poly. As part of the initiative, the renowned consortia management model of SUNY Poly SEMATECH is being expanded to new dimensions, maintaining its core nanoelectronics programs such as emerging nanoscale lithography technologies that are key to the international semiconductor industry, while embarking on new public-private ventures in green energy, power electronics, photonics and nanobiotechnology.

At SUNY Poly, as President and CEO of the SEMATECH initiative since 2013, Dr. Goldblatt oversees a 12-member global consortium of major computer chip manufacturers, which coordinates and oversees next-generation research, development and commercialization programs in lithography, interconnects, and metrology, among others, while managing global reach and influence through various program partnerships around the world in emerging nanotechnology-driven applications such as nanobiotechnology and sustainable energy.

Prior to his tenure at SUNY Poly, Dr. Goldblatt spent 22 years at IBM in the T.J. Watson Research Center, where he most recently served as Senior Manager of Advanced Silicon Science & Process Technology. Dr. Goldblatt holds a Ph.D. from the University of Connecticut, an M.A. from the University of Connecticut, and dual Bachelors degrees from the SUNY College at Purchase.

Paul Tolley currently oversees the Smart System Technology and Commercialization Center, which was created in 2010 through a merger of two of New York State’s Centers of Excellence: Infotonics Technology Center (ITC) in Canandaigua and the Center of Excellence in Nanoelectronics and Nanotechnology at SUNY Poly CNSE. Empire State Development and NYSTAR will invest up to $10 million in STC, which is managed and supported by SUNY Poly CNSE and leverages the state’s investment in these two facilities, positioning New York State as a global leader in smart system and smart device innovation and manufacturing.

Prior to joining CNSE, Mr. Tolley had an extensive career in the Rochester area in the Optics field, as well as serving as President & CEO at the Infotonics Technology Center from 2008-2010. Mr. Tolley holds a Bachelors from Clarkson University in Mechanical Engineering.

Ryne Raffaelle was appointed vice president for research and associate provost at RIT in 2011. He was formerly the director of the National Center for Photovoltaics at the National Renewable Energy Lab in Golden, Colo., the federal government’s central research organization for solar energy development. Raffaelle returns to RIT after serving in a number of different capacities from 2000 to 2009. His many assignments at RIT included an appointment as the first academic director of the Golisano Institute for Sustainability. He also served as the director of the NanoPower Research Lab at RIT. At the National Renewable Energy Lab in Colorado, Raffaelle provided technical vision, strategic leadership, asset stewardship and personnel management for the center. He worked on developing and enhancing technical capabilities relevant to advancing solar energy technologies while delivering world-class quality research and development, testing and validation.

Rob Clark serves as both the Dean of the Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and Senior Vice President for Research, at the University of Rochester.

As Vice President for Research, Rob manages the University’s online academic initiatives, the research component of information technology, and oversees the Laboratory for Laser Energetics, the Sponsored University Research Group, Office of Research Projects Administration, Center for Entrepreneurship, Office of Research Alliances, Office of Human Subjects Protection/Research Subjects Review Board, the Office of Technology Transfer, and the University’s Health Sciences Center for Computational Innovation (HSCCI).

As Hajim School dean since 2008, Clark has grown and strengthened the faculty, introduced cross-disciplinary master’s programs—including the MS in technical entrepreneurship management in collaboration with the Simon School of Business—and significantly increased the undergraduate enrollment in engineering. He also successfully led Hajim’s ABET accreditation efforts, and has provided key leadership in the school’s 2016 fundraising campaign goal.

Clark joined the University in 2008 from Duke University, after serving as senior associate dean and dean of the Pratt School of Engineering. His expertise in the science of acoustics and in bionanomanufacturing has led to 130 journal publications and earned him awards including the Lindsey Award of the Acoustical Society of America, the National Science Foundation Career Program Award, the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, and the NASA Group Achievement Award. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Acoustical Society of America, and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. He holds bachelors, masters, and doctoral degrees from Virginia Polytechnic Institute.

About the Photonics Institute

Photonics harnesses the power of light to move data at great speeds, and the research done at the new Institute will integrate photonics components to revolutionize computer chips, making them faster, smaller, and more reliable with a wide range of applications, including medical technology, defense, telecommunications, the Internet, and information technology.

A $110 million federal grant awarded to the SUNY Polytechnic-led “American Institute for Manufacturing Integrated Photonics” will support a high-tech national consortium. Total public and private investment in the Photonics Institute will exceed $600 million, including more than $250 million by New York State to equip, install, and make operational state-of-the-art photonics prototyping operations, including packaging and testing in Rochester. The institute’s work will establish an ecosystem around this promising technology to enable economic growth and job creation in the Greater Rochester area and across New York and the United States, enhance national security, and lead to major advances within a wide range of practical applications.

Thuringians are Coming

October 22, 2015

Optics in Thuringia, Germany

Date: Wednesday, Nov. 4th, 2015

Time: 11.15am registration followed by a buffet lunch and short presentation

Location: City View Ballroom, The Strathallan Hotel, 550 East Avenue, Rochester, NY 14607


For any enquiries please contact Doug Gray at 1-212-734-6513 /



OPTIFAB 2015 Charged with Activity

October 16, 2015

And the action was not restricted to the Riverside Convention Center.
warren eugene

Check out the SPIE Updates from the show here

Several RRPC companies hosted tours during the week.  Jim Sydor of Sydor Optics estimates that they hosted over 100 people between Monday and Friday, with a shuttle running between the convention center and the Sydor shop, in Gates.

The MCC Optics Department hosted representatives from various companies on Thursday as an extracurricular activity of the Optifab conference. A shuttle bus provided transportation from the Rochester Riverside Convention Center to the MCC Brighton campus. Professors Alexis Vogt and Bill Strong showed off the recently renovated optics laboratories. Generous investments from the Corning Incorporated Foundation and Sydor Optics have transformed the labs into a state-of-the-art facility for optics education.

Five folks from Google were at the Cartel Clambake, and two of them visited MCC on Wednesday for a tour. In addition to checking out MCC’s impressive labs, there were discussions about Google internships for folks in the MCC Optical Systems Technology Program.

Optifab held its first ever (really? yes!) job fair on Thursday during the conference.


Visitors to Rochester were welcomed by an International Year of Light exhibit of colorful posters highlighting the impact of light upon our lives.  The posters were installed by the UR SPIE student chapter and visiting SPIE student chapter participants from St. Petersburg, Russia.

The RRPC Blog received a note from Diane Eagles, a teacher at #46 School in Rochester:
“On my way back to Rochester, from a long weekend in Puerto Rico, I was pleasantly welcomed by the photonics display at the airport. I am originally from Michigan and it always surprises me, the number of Rochestarians who know nothing of being the optics center of the world. I have designed and teach an optics class at school #46 in Rochester, New York. My hope is that the seed would be planted and one day bring to fruition opportunities of training and jobs in the field of photonics. The banners have inspired me to have my students do banners in celebration of light using some of the lessons we are learning about the behavior of light. I would love to have one or more of these U of R students visit our school.”

SUNY POLY Chief Scientist will Speak at Rochester IEEE Meeting

October 15, 2015

October 27th  at 6:30pm

Dr. Michael Liehr, CEO of AIM Photonics will be giving a IEEE Rochester Photonics Society talk at RIT.  

The title of the talk is “AIM Photonics: What merging photonics with nanoelectronics will do”.

Liehr was an invited speaker for the New York Photonics Annual Meeting, but was unable to attend.   This is a good opportunity to hear from Liehr and his vision of Integrated Photonics.

>More information and registration details here.<<

What we might expect:

SPIE International Year of Light Banners Welcome OptiFab Visitors

October 13, 2015

Student volunteers from the University of Rochester Institute of Optics SPIE Student Chapter helped New York Photonics Executive Director, Tom Battley assemble and install 20 beautiful photo banners at the Greater Rochester International Airport on Friday, October 9.

The banners are there to welcome visitors and exhibitors to Rochester during SPIE Optifab, held in Rochester biannually, and to inform travelers about photonics.

They highlight the many ways that light impacts our lives, and were attracting curious passers by even as they were being assembled.  Afterwards the team went out to lunch!

The banners will be installed at the airport through the end of October.

As the old adage goes: Many hands make light work!

20 Banner celbrating the Internaional Year of Light were on display during Optifab and were at the Rochester International Airport for a month.

20 panels celebrating the International Year of Light were on display during Optifab and were at the Rochester International Airport for a month.


L to R: Mariia Borovkova, Gustavo Gandara Montano, Fabrizio Buccheri, Xing Fan, Sam Birsa, Aizhong Zhang, Evgenii Strepitov, Leonid Lialiushkin


Solar Startup to Build Big Factory in Upstate New York

October 7, 2015

It’s photonics. Get it?

Following SolarCity’s plan to build a factory in Buffalo, New York, another solar company has been attracted to the area with incentives.

Upstate New York is quickly becoming a new hub for solar manufacturing.

On Wednesday afternoon solar startup 1366 Technologies, and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, announced that 1366 will build a factory in Genesee County, which is located between Buffalo and Rochester, in upstate New York. The 100,000 square-foot factory could provide 1,000 jobs to the region.

The factory, which is supposed to break ground in the second quarter of 2016, will eventually churn out 600 million silicon solar wafers per year. A silicon wafer is the raw ingredient of a traditional solar cell, and a few dozen solar cells make up one solar panel.

>>Read More Here<<

Company Website:

>>Fast Company Most Innovative Energy Companies<<

Schumer Pushed for Photonics Rule Revision in D.C.

October 7, 2015

The United States commerce and state departments are rewriting a proposed rule that had a major impact on Rochester optics companies in part because U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer nudged them to do so.

The proposed rule would have placed certain optics-related technologies on a do-not-export-outside-the-country list. The state and commerce department officials originally planned to place these technologies on the list because they didn’t want breakthroughs falling into the hands of foreign enemies.