Located in Montreal, Canada, IRphotonics is a leader in the design and manufacture of infrared, fluoride-based optical fiber with exceptional optical and mechanical properties in the 0.30 to 5.5 micron range. Founded in 2004 by Eric Geoffrion and Mohammed Saad, the organization’s products have been incorporated into a wide range of multi-spectral applications in the medical, environmental sensing, spectroscopy, and defense industries.
This acquisition builds upon Thorlabs’ recent purchase of Maxion Technologies, Inc., a world leader in the development and commercialization of mid IR (MIR) turn-key semiconductor lasers. The purchase of Maxion and IRphotonics has been part of a multiyear effort by Thorlabs to become a vertical manufacturer of a wide variety of products designed to provide solutions for researchers and product developers working in the MIR. This underutilized portion of the optical spectrum has the potential to make a significant impact in medical and sensing markets, as the fundamental resonances of many molecules are located in this spectral range. In addition, there are two atmospheric transmission windows (3-5 µm and 8-10 µm) that allow for remote or standoff detection applications, allowing for wide area monitoring of chemical compounds.
“We welcome the IRphotonics team to the Thorlabs family,” said Alex Cable, President and Founder of Thorlabs. “By combining the quantum cascade lasers of Maxion Technologies, with the MIR fiber capabilities of IRphotonics, we are able to build photonic systems utilizing the benefits of both with 1 plus 1 being greater than 2. Additionally, having a vertical manufacturing base for MIR subsystems combined with a robust research effort, I believe we can make significant contributions to bringing MIR technologies to bear on technically challenging problems.”
The IRphotonics iGuide group and manufacturing equipment will relocate to Thorlabs’ headquarters in Newton, NJ, becoming an integral part of its growing Fiber Optics Business Unit. The integration of IRphotonics brings additional fiber draw capabilities to Thorlabs as well as core competencies in the manufacturing of glass and preforms.
IRphotonics (irphotonics.com) is the leading designer and manufacturer of technologically sophisticated infrared fibers and systems utilized for the transmission of infrared light and assembly operations requiring high-intensity infrared heat. The company leverages its unique and in-depth expertise of infrared light and materials to offer innovative products ranging from specialty optical fibers and light guides to its revolutionary thermal spot curing system.
Thorlabs (thorlabs.com), a vertically integrated photonics products manufacturer, was founded in 1989 to serve the laser and electro-optics research market. As that market has spawned a multitude of technical innovations, Thorlabs has extended its core competencies in an effort to play an ever increasing role serving the Photonics Industry at the research end, as well as the industrial, life science, medical, and defense segments. The organization’s highly integrated and diverse manufacturing assets include semiconductor fabrication of Fabry-Perot, DFB, and VCSEL lasers, fiber towers for drawing glass optical fibers (silica, fluoride, tellurite, and hollow core), MBE crystal growth machines, extensive glass and metal fabrication facilities, advanced thin film deposition capabilities, and optomechanical and optoelectronic shops.