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Laser World of Photonics

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24 June 2019 to 27 June 2019
Munich, Germany

This year’s Laser World of Photonics, taking place in Munich, Germany, from 24 to 27 June, will have a particular focus on electro-mobility and autonomous driving, two global trends that are expected to grow dramatically over the coming decade.

The laser and imaging technology on show at this year's exhibition will play a crucial role in breaking into these mass markets, including in the efficient mass production of electric vehicles and improved safety enabled by smart sensors.

Photonics provides the technological backbone of automated driving, with lidar and imaging systems increasingly taking over from human drivers’ sensory perception – offering superior performance particularly at night and in difficult weather conditions. Visitors will be able to see how up-and-coming lidar technologies will enable future mobility at the application panel ‘Improving lidar performance with advanced photonics technologies’, on 25 June from 15:00 to 17:20, where exhibitors such as Jenoptik will provide an introduction to the technology and showcase its applications.

Show floor

More than 100 exhibitors will be displaying imaging and sensor solutions on the show floor. Alongside the established imaging companies, there will also be start-ups, including: Moscow-based Dephan with its advanced silicon-based photomultipliers; the Finnish Nokia spin-off Emberion with its imaging and sensor solutions based on graphene and nano-materials; and Braunschweig-based FiSens, which makes fibre optic sensors using fibre Bragg gratings.

Other new providers include: Single Quantum from Delft, which develops superconducting nanowire single-photon detectors; and Xarion, offering optical microphones for industrial process control and machine monitoring.

One of the more established firms, imaging specialist PCO, has teamed up with system manufacturer EOS and MTU Aero Engines to create fully monitored, additive laser melting processes. PCO will exhibit sCMOS and intensified cameras during the show.

Congress

Three of the seven Laser World of Photonics Congress sub-conferences have an imaging theme. The OSA conference ‘Imaging and applied optics’ deals with computer-aided optical sensors and imaging, mathematical principles, and environmental influences on imaging processes.

‘Digital optical technologies’ by SPIE Europe is concerned with the topic of mixed, virtual and augmented reality, while the SPIE ‘Optical metrology’ conference will address the use of artificial intelligence and multimodal sensors, as well as automated inline inspection and biomaterials imaging.

There will be an expert panel on Photonics 4.0 by the Spectaris industry association, and application panels spanning the entire gamut of modern imaging. For example, professor Andreas Tünnermann, director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering in Jena, and Dr Jürgen Stuhler, senior director quantum technologies of Toptica Photonics, will discuss the future role of photons as quantum objects and as an information support in imaging and communication.

In addition, experts from the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Lasermedizin – German Society for Laser Medicine – and LMU Munich will offer insights into medical practice using virtual and augmented reality.

Another panel involving PCO and Omicron-Laserage will showcase the expanding range of processes in laser-based light microscopy. Innovations in the fields of visual optics, optical imaging and diagnostics, and laser-based medical therapies are also on the programme.

The European Photonics Industry Consortium (EPIC) will also host a meeting on surface structuring, supported by LAmPAS. It will be held on 27 June from 09:30 until 13:00 in the conference room A21. Speakers include those from: Microrelleus, TU Dresden, Trumpf, Next Scan Technology, New Infrared Technologies - which will present on high speed MWIR cameras for monitoring laser based surface texturing processes - Lasea, and Femtika.

Encouraging young talent

The trade fair continues to support the relationship between industry and academia with activities such as the Makeathon, which made its debut in 2017. Here around 80 to 100 students have the chance to demonstrate their photonics expertise by developing innovative solutions using photonics technology over a 24-hour period.

Both the Makeathon and the start-up pavilion will be located in hall B2.

Exhibitors: 

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Andanta

Andanta will display its new VGA InGaAs image sensor and an InGaAs avalanche photodiode chip. The sensor has a pixel pitch of 15μm and an overall active sensor area of 9.6 x 7.68mm. It has quantum efficiency of 70 per cent, a read out rate of 300 fps at full resolution. The sensor is available in both uncooled, 1-stage and 2-stage thermoelectric cooled versions.

The InGaAs avalanche photodiode chip has a 200μm active diameter, and is capable of photon counting in both linear and quenched modes. Typically, the InGaAs APD operates at an operating voltage of 35 to 50V. The response speed is 1GHz (3dB bandwidth).

Also on show from Andanta will be its Dirview converter, which transforms shortwave infrared light into green light. The converter integrates an InGaAs photodiode array as a near-infrared detector with a special circuit to drive a green-emitting LED array with the same pixel size and resolution as the detector array. Thus, SWIR scenes can be examined with the naked eye or read in with a visible, silicon-based camera. The detection sensitivity of the Dirview converter is currently 100μW/mm2 irradiance at a conversion efficiency of 3 per cent W/W from the near-infrared to the visible light. The response time of the converter is short in the range of a few hundred megahertz to1GHz. The default local resolution of the converter is 320 x 320 or 1,280 x 960 pixels, with a pixel size of 10μm.

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BitFlow

BitFlow (B2.125-3), which has been manufacturing frame grabbers for 26 years, will display its CXP12 Claxon frame grabber at the show in Munich. The CXP12 Claxon has a throughput of 5GB/s – that's thirteen USB3 cameras, or almost six Camera Link cameras. This frame grabber will be available for sale in Q3 this year.

Coupled with this, BitFlow will be demonstrating some of its new prototypes for embedded solutions with an Nvidia Jetson AGX Xavier. As demand for embedded increases for new vision ventures, the market is requesting higher data rates than conventional GigE Vision and USB3 Vision interfaces can provide.

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Delta Optical Thin Film

Delta Optical Thin Film (B1/638) will display its continuously variable bandpass filters (CVBPFs) for mid-size and full-frame CCD and CMOS sensors. These filters offer very high transmission and are fully blocked in the light-sensitive wavelength range of silicon-based detectors.

The combination of CVBPFs with silicon detectors allows manufacturers to design compact, robust and affordable hyperspectral imaging cameras that offer several benefits over conventional approaches based on prisms or gratings as dispersive elements. Using CVBPFs can give a much larger aperture compared to grating- and prism-based systems; they give higher transmission, short measurement time, high suppression of stray light, and excellent signal-to-background noise ratio. They can also provide simultaneous 3D measurements and a snapshot capability using a micro-lens array.

The new optical approach makes hyperspectral imaging attractive for volume markets or even consumer products, for example, cancer detection, precision farming, and food testing in supermarkets.

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Raptor Photonics

Raptor Photonics will launch the Falcon III using EMCCD Gen III technology.

The Falcon III incorporates a new EMCCD sensor developed by e2v, with 1-megapixel resolution and 10µm square pixels. The back-illuminated sensor offers a peak QE of greater than 95 per cent, offering excellent sensitivity with a total noise floor as low as 0.01 electrons readout noise.

EMCCD GEN III offers the combination of sensitivity and speed through a single output amplifier, thereby maximising uniformity. It is three times faster than previous generation EMCCDs with superior linearity and low gain performance.

Up to 5,000 times electron multiplication gain can be applied to the sensor using lower voltages, resulting in reduced sensor ageing effects. The camera can be cooled to -70°C using Raptor’s PentaVac vacuum technology. The new camera will run through Camera Link.

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Teledyne Princeton Instruments

Teledyne Princeton Instruments will showcase its new Sophia 4096, a deep-cooled, large format CCD camera with 15µm pixels. Sophia cameras are ideal for applications ranging from astronomy to fluorescence imaging.

Additionally, Blaze CCD cameras for spectroscopy will be shown with PI’s IsoPlane spectrographs, alongside NIRvana SWIR cameras, scientific-grade InGaAs cameras designed for quantitative NIR/SWIR imaging and spectroscopy applications.

Finally, the Fergie aberration-free spectroscopy system will be on display, a high performance and versatile instrument. Teledyne Princeton Instruments provides CCD, sCMOS, ICCD, EMCCD, emICCD, x-ray and InGaAs cameras; spectrometers; spectrographs; imaging systems; optics; and coatings.

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Vision Components

Vision Components (A2, Booth 113/4) will present its line-up of hardware and software solutions for image processing OEMs. New VC-MIPI camera modules, for instance, are designed to connect to Raspberry Pi, 96Boards and many other makes of CPU boards. These ultra-compact, industrial-standard PCBs enable efficient implementations of multi-camera set-ups, for example in smart city or other novel applications. The products are available for delivery with short lead times, in large quantities, and at consumer prices.

High-performance CMOS sensors from Sony's Pregius series have been integrated in VC-Z embedded vision systems, enabling them to achieve 88fps at resolutions up to 3.2 megapixels, or 174 fps at 1.6 megapixels. In addition, all VCnanoZ cameras are optionally available with application-specific LED lighting integrated in the standard housing.

The latest embedded laser profiler is also on exhibit. With this product, Vision Components’ ambient light suppression technology enables measurements even under difficult lighting conditions up to 100,000 lux, making the laser profiler very reliable. Like all VC-Z products, the laser profiler also features a Xilinx Zynq module, a system-on-chip with an integrated FPGA that handles all 3D data computations. A 2x866MHz Arm processor is also part of the system for free programming to cover application-specific tasks such as grey value analysis. This enables additional testing tasks to be performed in 2D.

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Xenics

Xenics (A2 booth 120) will present its SWIR cameras targeting high-speed applications in industrial and research markets. The area scan (2D) SWIR Cheetah series delivers 640 x 512-pixel imaging at full frame rates of up to 1,730Hz.

In the line scan (1D) SWIR category, the Manx series provides line rates up to 260kHz, with up to 2,048-pixel resolution. The Manx cameras also offer high quantum efficiency in the 900nm to 1,700nm wavelength range.

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