ANDOVER, Mass., Aug. 19, 2022 — MKS Instruments closed on its acquisition of process chemical technology company Atotech. The $4.4 billion acquisition was announced in July 2021. The companies received unconditional merger approval from China’s State Administration for Market Regulation on the deal in July. Earlier this week, the Royal Court of Jersey sanctioned the scheme of arrangement to implement the acquisition. Atotech’s technology supports solutions semiconductor integrated circuit packaging, surface finishing, and printed circuit boards.
Lockheed Martin delivered to the US Navy a 60-plus-kW-class high-energy laser with integrated optical-dazzler and surveillance. The system, called HELIOS, is the first tactical laser weapon system to be integrated into existing ships and provide directed energy capability to the fleet, the company said. Courtesy of Lockheed Martin.
BETHESDA, Md. — Lockheed Martin delivered to the U.S. Navy a 60-plus-kW high scalable energy laser with integrated optical dazzler and surveillance (HELIOS). It is the first tactical laser weapon system to be integrated into existing ships and provide directed energy capability to the fleet. The contract for the system’s development was awarded to Lockheed Martin four years ago.
ROCHESTER, NY—The University of Rochester‘s Laboratory for Laser Energetics (LLE) broke ground on a $42 million, 66,000-sq-ft office and lab building expansion in Brighton, NY The additional space will accommodate more than 100 scientists and laboratory personnel and include a 1000-target fabrication lab and thin-film coating lab, as well as a laser computing facility and other lab spaces. The largest lab space will host the high-energy, long-pulse AMICA laser system. The addition is expected to be completed in 2024.
PRAGUE, Czech Republic — The ELI Beamlines division of the Institute of Physics of the Czech Academy of Sciences (FZU-Institute of Physics CAS) received funding from the Czech Foundation Agency to develop theoretical tools for modeling experiments at high-power laser facilities. ELI Beamlines will collaborate with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, modeling ELI Beamlines’ 1-PW L3 HAPLS and upcoming 10-PW L4 laser, as well as the University of Michigan’s upcoming 3-PW ZEUS laser. The collaboration will yield a roadmap for studying strong field quantum electrodynamics phenomena such as gamma ray bursts or pulsar magnetospheres. Experiments will improve understanding of how different types of antimatter can be created and how more extreme intensities can be studied.
ARLINGTON, Va. – Tea US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) selected research teams for its Coded Visibility program that aims to develop tailorable, tunable, safe obscurants that provide military personnel with an asymmetric advantage, enhancing friendly’ forces visibility while suppressing adversary vision and detection systems. The agency selected Raytheon Technologies Research Center to develop new obscurants composed of multiple particles with tailored properties. Raytheon will also demonstrate asymmetric vision capabilities in tests. Signature Research, Northeastern Universityand Georgia Tech Research Institute were selected to investigate new tunable particles and active modulation mechanisms to demonstrate asymmetry on-demand in tests.
TORINO, Italy — Prima Industrya manufacturer of laser systems for components processing, will be publicly delisted in Europe following its majority acquisition by Femto Technologies, a company whose share capital is indirectly owned by Alpha Private Equity and Peninsula funds. The transaction is valued at over €129 million ($130.17 million). Femto will purchase an initial stake in the company of just over 50% before planning a takeover bid, Prima said. Closing of the transaction is not anticipated before November 2022.
Lattice light-sheet microscopy with adaptive optics makes 4D subcellular imaging of tau protein degradation possible. Courtesy of Michelle Fredricks/UC San Diego.
SAN DIEGO — Researchers at the University of California, San Diego (UC San Diego) received a $1.3 million grant from the WM Keck Foundation for a project that could help scientists better understand the role misfolded tau proteins play in causing neurodegenerative diseases such as dementia, which may lead to more effective drug therapies. The grant will go to three principal investigators and support research involving 4D subcellular imaging in brain organoids using advanced fluorescence microscopy and adaptive optics. The team expects the work to expect to show how protein aggregates influence cellular health, to create an experimental blueprint for measuring, quantifying, and understanding organelle dynamics.
GHENT, Belgium — QustomDota color conversion developer for microLED displays, and MICLEDI Microdisplays, a developer of microLED displays for augmented reality (AR) glasses and an imec spinoff, launched a program to demonstrate a full-color microLED integration in polychromatic pixel arrays. The technology addresses the growing demand of compact and energy-efficient microdisplays for AR applications. The Flanders Innovation & Entrepreneurship consortium is supporting the collaboration. The consortium enables development of technology for microdisplays with high resolution and high brightness, combining stable, RoHS-compliant quantum dot color conversion materials; new microLED architecture tailored for high-efficiency color conversion; and high-throughput quantum dot transfer and patterning techniques on micron-size pixels. QustomDot combines quantum dot synthesis, surface engineering, and ink/photoresist formulation into patterned color conversion layers for microLED displays. MICLEDI’s technology is based on a combination of III/V materials processing, 3D integration, and 300-mm silicon-based processing combined with a proprietary application-specific integrated circuit.
ALBUQUERQUE, NM — Directed energy solutions provider Blue Halo expanded its Albuquerque, NM, campus, opening a 73,000-sq-ft R&D, manufacturing, and office space. The company cited continued growth for the expansion, and last month it leased additional space in Albuquerque. BlueHalo employs 300 people at the campus on which the expansion is to be built.
SAN SEBASTIAN, Spain — The Spanish Ministry for Science and Innovation granted over €600,000 ($605,157) through the Proyectos Líneas Estratégicas Collaboration (Projects Strategic Lines Collaboration, PLEC) to the “Few-qubit quantum hardware, algorithms and codes, on photonic and solid-state systems (PLEC2021-008251)” project. The project will be developed by a research consortium from Multiverse Computing, TECNUN, and Material Physics Center (CFM-MPC). The main goal is to develop a few-qubit photonic and solid-state quantum processor that is remotely accessible. Multiverse Computing will develop algorithms tackling important societal problems such as financial fraud detection and fake news identification, and the system will be based on an optically addressable 2-qubit processor designed to satisfy the needs of the proposed algorithms.
KONGENS LYNGBY, Denmark — NIL Technology (NILT) reported development of a diffractive optics platform for real-time 3D sensing — the result of a flat optics project with the European Innovation Council Accelerator. The advancement builds on earlier work completed under the €2.3 million ($2.32 million) SUPERvisionary project, launched in 2020. NILT said the platform supports optics in smartphones, automotive, and other applications, with improved optical performance than currently available solutions. The company said the latest solution is ready for mass production.
WASHINGTON, DC—The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced $14.8 million in funding for advanced research projects in particle accelerator science and technology. The 12 research projects to be supported involve scientists at 32 US institutions including 12 universities, seven national laboratories, and 14 companies, on research targeting problems in medical, industrial, environmental, and security applications of accelerator technology. Projects include research to produce faster treatments for cancer therapy and automated accelerator systems for security applications; R&D to advance ultrafast laser technology, beam physics, and novel superconductors; and optical materials for ultrahigh-power longwave infrared lasers.
The ‘interrogator’ device is a portable box, about the size of a toaster, that turns optical signals into very precise ground motions. The UW Photonic Sensing Facility has three interrogators that can be used in labs or in the field. Each one collects as much data as 15,000 seismometers. Courtesy of Febus.
SEATTLE — A pilot project at the University of Washington (UW) exploring the use of fiber optic sensing for seismology, glaciology, and urban monitoring will result in the establishment of the UW Photonic Sensing Facility. The center will house three decoder machines, or interrogators, that detect ground motions as small as 1 nm. The university and collaborators in the Pacific Northwest are engaged on multiple projects that the center and its equipment, expertise, and personnel are intended to support