Photonex 2017

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11 October 2017 to 12 October 2017
Coventry, UK

Photonex is the UK's largest showcase event dedicated to photonics and light technologies. The trade show and conference brings together all aspects of industry and research, helping visitors develop strong business relationships, research solutions, examine applications for photonics in research and technology use in manufacturing.



Aerotech designs and manufactures motion control and positioning systems for industry, government, science, and research institutions. This year the firm will be showcasing its range of: piezo and direct-drive nanopositioners; hexapods; planar and rotary air-bearing stages; high-speed gantries; mechanical-bearing linear, rotary, and lift stages; brushless linear and rotary servomotors and drives; motion controllers; goniometers; galvanometers; and its gimbals/optical mounts.

The company’s precision motion products serve markets such as: optics and photonics; semiconductor and flat panel; aerospace and defense; medical device and life sciences; automotive; data storage; laser processing; electronic manufacturing and testing; assembly; and research and development.



Acktar, a provider of deep black light-absorbing coatings and materials, will showcase its series of test specimens for active opto-electronic protective devices responsive to diffuse reflection.

Such protective devices are part of safety-related systems, which are mainly used in the human-machine interaction. Therefore the protective devices are subject to particularly stringent safety requirements. A reliable detection of people and objects and thus, the proper function of the safety scanners is essential to prevent a collision. The product norm DIN CLC/TS 61496-3 sets requirements for the construction, assembly and testing of such electrosensitive protective equipment for the detection of persons.

During the scanning process, both the character of the obstacles (especially clothes), as well as the reflection of ambient light, pose a significant risk of interferences for the optoelectronic signal detection.

Based on the requirements DIN CLC/TS 61496-3, ACKTAR has developed a range of various test specimens, which provide the requisite conditions for the functional test of safety scanners.

AP Technologies

AP Technologies will be demonstrating compact, high performance spectrometers from OtO Photonics. These spectrometers are available as Czerny Turner and proprietary aberration-corrected freeform concave grating MEMS designs, covering 180 to 1,650nm with CCD, CMOS, back-thinned, cooled back-thinned and linear InGaAs array detectors.

On display will be OtO’s UltraMicro spectrometers, measuring 23 x 31 x 8.5mm. AP Technologies will also be operating OtO’s SmartEngine SE1020 spectrometer with BL-60 ‘Balanced Light’ source to demonstrate the firm’s software interface.

The spectrometers suit common applications such as LED testing, water- and air-quality monitoring, blood and DNA analysis, Raman detection, and solar panel and thin-film measurement.

The performance of these low cost spectrometers has been optimised using OtO’s stray light calibration process, enabling them to achieve stray light levels as low as 0.01 per cent – better than models costing $30,000 and upwards.


Alrad Photonics

On stand C21, Alrad Photonics will be showing a range of compact, low power, laser diode modules, including spot and line emitters and the StingRay series of high performance / high functionality structured light lasers. These will be complemented by a selection of optical components, including optical filters and diffraction gratings. 



Casix will display high power laser isolators that offer greater than 35dB isolation at 1,064nm in a stainless steel, zero outgassing package. 

The firm's new CNCs have been installed for aspherics, irregular shaped optics, and moulded optics. Casix can offer 5/3 S/D roughness down to 1Å, and flatness better than lam/20. It now services medical markets with its range of micro fluidic flow cells and RGB & RGB+IR combiners.  


Centre for Process Innovation

The Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) is a UK-based technology innovation centre and the process arm of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult. CPI collaborates with universities, SMEs and large corporates to help overcome innovation challenges and develop next generation products and processes. 

Operating across a broad range of technologies, CPI supports its partners at every step; from concept to market; from business support to technology development; and from scale up to supply chain intervention. 

CPI’s new National Centre for Healthcare Photonics, opening in 2018, seeks to assist companies by de-risking and speeding up the translation of new photonics-enabled products from the lab bench to market. The new centre will provide open access to facilities, equipment and expertise tailored towards design, development and pilot manufacturing of photonics-enabled medical technologies. 

The centre’s initial focus will be on the main themes of imaging, diagnostics and therapy. 

Find out more at stand IL02.


Comsol will present a workshop on how to use its Comsol Multiphysics software for photonics simulations; in particular, periodic structures and crystals. The company will show how modelling can provide insight into the design and characterisation of photonic devices. This includes solving for the propagation of electromagnetic waves, even in the presence of wavelength-dependent material properties, as well as multiphysics effects like heating or mechanical loading.

Comsol Multiphysics is an integrated software environment for creating physics-based models and simulation apps. A particular strength is its ability to account for coupled or multiphysics phenomena.

Comsol is a global provider of simulation software for product design and research to technical enterprises, research labs, and universities. Its analysis tools cover applications including optics and photonics, RF and microwave, semiconductor processes, molecular flow, and MEMS, to name a few.


Ibsen Photonics

Ibsen Photonics will demonstrate its digital image sensor board (DISB) spectrometer electronics, which allow users to build analytical instruments with accurate control of exposure timing. Trigger delay can be as short as 360ns with a very low jitter of only ±10 ns, which together with the exposure time of down to 2.2µs enables accurate time gating. When combined with the firm's Freedom spectrometers, the DISB electronics provide a compact solution for applications such as laser induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) that require accurate synchronisation with a pulsed light source.

The DISB electronics supports both a low cost CMOS detector as well as a low noise back-thinned CCD.

Ibsen Photonics supplies compact OEM spectrometer modules for applications such as UV, VIS, NIR, Raman, OCT, and LIBS.


Laser Components

Laser Components will display its standard and extended InGaAs photodiodes and arrays, designed for demanding spectroscopic and radiometric applications. Also being shown are its APD modules with 450nm to 1,100nm reach through technology, its mini high voltage ABC550 series of DC/DC converters for optimum APD performance, a complementary range of pulsed laser diodes offering greater than 650W optical power at 905nm, and lithium tantalate and DLaTGS pyroelectric detectors.

In addition there will be laser optics, optical filters, photodiodes, laser diodes and modules, fibre optics, and accessories including laser goggles, large area laser protection, IR converter cards and electronic modules such as low noise lock in amplifiers. 

Optoelectronics Research Centre

The Optoelectronics Research Centre (ORC) will be showcasing its capabilities in silicon photonics, speciality optical fibres and advanced materials, and will be running two demonstrations: a multipurpose highly portable medical test which can diagnose multiple conditions, and high durability non-toxic chalcogenide glasses from the visible to the thermal infrared LWIR band.
The ORC will also be supporting the Photonex Enlighten Conference, which features application and technology advances, innovations and emerging technologies. The University of Southampton’s cornerstone project, ‘UK silicon photonics fabrication capability’, will be part of the Wednesday programme.

Also on Wednesday, The Future Photonics Hub will present a Q& A session discussing the launch of its Innovation Fund. This annual call from the EPSRC future manufacturing research hub in photonics, led by the ORC, invites proposals from RCUK-eligible research groups and individuals to carry out short-term projects that bring additional value to the programme and support its objectives to develop next-generation photonics manufacturing processes.

Physik Instrumente

Visitors to Physik Instrumente (PI) at stand E15 can explore the world of ultra-precision motion, positioning and control. PI will be highlighting the capabilities and simplicity of its systems, with demonstrations of piezo tip/tilt mirrors for pinpoint optical laser accuracy and a chance to view a microscopy stage set-up with the Pifoc – a precision focal positioner with fast autofocus, making it ideal for super resolution microscopy.

PI’s team will be on hand to discuss the latest innovations in the sector, including the company’s vacuum-compatible six-axis hexapods, which feature a parallel kinematic design to offer ultra-stable, nano-resolution positioning in a compact footprint. Visitors will also be able to see a wide range of microscopy positioners for both sample and objective control in AFM, SEM and optical applications. Visit stand E15 to learn more.

Photonic Solutions

Photonic Solutions will be exhibiting Oxxius’s range of DPSS and diode lasers, Quantel’s Q-Smart compact, pulsed Nd:YAG laser, B&H’s TCSPC equipment, Ocean Optics’ miniature spectrometers, a QCW fibre laser from Spark Lasers and Light Conversion’s series of femtosecond lasers for micromachining.

Photonic Solutions’ portfolio includes a wide range of laser systems, including broadly tunable OPOs, OPAs and dye lasers, fixed wavelength diode and DPSS lasers, narrow linewidth lasers, continuous-wave fibre lasers, ultra-fast femtosecond and picosecond fibre lasers, and solid state equivalents.

The company’s spectroscopy offerings include off-the-shelf spectrometers, single photon counting (TCSPC) modules and detectors. Within its microscopy portfolio are two-photon laser scanning microscopes, fluorescence lifetime imaging systems and lasers for confocal and two-photon techniques. The firm also offers turnkey time-correlated single-photon counting fluorescence lifetime imaging, laser diagnostics, and laser safety equipment.

Princeton Instruments

Visit the Princeton Instruments stand to learn about the new Fergie spectroscopy system - a compact, fully integrated, aberration-free spectrograph with a built-in, low-noise, cooled detector. Its ecosystem includes lasers, fibre optics, calibration sources, light-coupling Cubes and powerful software that allow researchers and educators to set up complete experiments in minutes.

The company will also have information about the SpectrapPro HRS 300 spectrograph and the new Kuro - a scientific CMOS camera that implements back-illuminated sensor technology with powerful software. Don’t forget to ask about Princeton Instruments’ Nirvana SWIR scientific-grade InGaAs cameras, PI-Max4 ICCD cameras and ProEM HS high-speed EMCCD cameras, as well as IsoPlane aberration-free spectrographs.

Pro-Lite Technology

To celebrate its 15th anniversary, Pro-Lite Technology has booked its largest stand to date (24m2) to better display new and innovative products.

Pro-Lite will focus on four technology areas with its 2017 Photonex exhibit:

  • Laser Safety: in addition to the Pro-Lite/Laservision Laser Safety Workshop on Wednesday 11th October, Pro-Lite will be exhibiting a selection of new laser safety filters and various eyewear frame styles from Laservision. Of particular interest will be the polycarbonate P1M03 filter which is a clear filter with excellent colour recognition, visible light transmission and high levels of protection throughout the infrared. The filters will be displayed alongside samples of laser safety curtains for large area protection and cabin windows.
  • Opto-Mechanics: Pro-Lite will be joined by German partners OWIS who are launching a range of new, ultra-high vacuum (UHV) compatible opto-mechanical and motion control equipment. OWIS’s UHV equipment is suitable for use in pressure ranges down to 10-9 mbar. In addition, a range of standard OWIS optical components and stages will also be on display.
  • Spectroscopy: Pro-Lite will be highlighting the latest spectrometers from Wasatch Photonics and Ocean Optics. Wasatch use transmission volume phase holographic gratings and low f-number optical bench designs resulting in spectrometers that excel in low light level applications such as Raman and fluorescence spectroscopy. The Wasatch team has recently introduced a family of Raman spectrometers for multiple excitation wavelengths. Pro-Lite will be running a Raman demo using a 785nm device measuring from a variety of test samples. Also on display will be the very latest spectrometers from Ocean Optics. A demonstration will be provided of emission and colour spectroscopy using the new high speed Ocean FX to monitor a tuneable LED source.
  • The company will also display a range of spectral imaging products

Please note that Pro-Lite is supporting the Photonex exhibition by presenting parallel workshops on Laser Safety and on Light Measurement Theory and Pro-Lite’s Dr Nick Barnett has assisted The Enlighten Conference organisers with the coordination of the Hyperspectral Imaging Conference

Pyser Optics

Visit Pyser Optics at stand number A12. For more than 60 years, the company has been designing and manufacturing precision micropatterns, providing a broad range of optic products to an international client base. Pyser's skills and expertise enable customers to select from a comprehensive range of standard micropattern products or take advantage of its bespoke manufacturing service, utilising innovative solutions and industry knowledge.



Topica will be showcasing its new FemtoFiber dichro midIR, a broadband mid-infrared laser (5-15µm) ideal for mid-infrared spectroscopy and near-field studies. It provides tuneable broadband pulses with more than 400cm-1 bandwidth at 80MHz repetition rate. The FemtoFiber dichro midIR is an innovative tool for the chemical analysis of materials with nanoscale resolution, e.g. in near-field spectroscopy systems.

Also featured at the booth will be the new TeraSpeed superfast terahertz sensing platform, which enables contact-free material characterisation techniques with exceptional data rates, supporting applications like non-destructive testing, plastic inspection or process control with a sampling rate of 100 million data points per second. The TeraSpeed complements Toptica’s portfolio of terahertz systems.

Toptica’s product range also includes the time-domain terahertz platform TeraFlash, which achieves a peak dynamic range of 90dB and a bandwidth of 6THz. Additionally, Toptica’s frequency-domain terahertz platform TeraScan allows for a frequency resolution better than 10MHz and a dynamic range up to 100dB.