Unique Technology Combination Enables New Features

JDSU is advancing the world of polarization optics with today's announcement of its ability to combine thin-film and liquid crystal polymer technologies to produce high-quality custom birefringent components.

Drawing upon six decades of thin-film design and coatings expertise, JDSU is enabling the use of polarized light in a novel manner to create new features -- not possible otherwise -- in an expanded range of markets. These markets include biomedical imaging, polarimetry and instrumentation, among others.

With its high degree of precision and customization, such as patterning and monolithic integration with other optical components, JDSU's new waveplate technology is particularly suited for use in applications requiring miniaturization, high resolution, or high contrast such as remote sensing, front projection display, confocal microscopy, optical tweezers/trapping and astronomy.

According to recent data from market research firm, iSuppli Corporation, the front projection display market has the potential to be a $7 billion market as the demand for lighter, sharper, brighter projectors continues to grow. JDSU already has commercialized its custom contrast enhancement products for the front projection display industry and is currently prototyping its new waveplate technology with companies in biomedical applications and optical data storage particularly for next generation applications.

"JDSU's unique technology combination is opening the door to emerging applications in laser projection, optical tweezers, confocal microscopy, and high density optical data storage for example-that particularly value high-precision solutions," said Barry Weitzenberg, general manager of JDSU's Advanced Optical Technologies, Custom Optics Product Group. "This advance also enables customers to replace two components with one, which makes their products more durable, reliable and cost-effective."

"In our imaging polarimetry research using the new JDSU technology, we have been able to observe polarization vortices and specially designed point spread functions of very high fidelity with minimal depolarization demonstrating that the liquid crystal polymer technology is ready to enable many new optics applications," said Russell Chipman, professor of Optical Sciences at the University of Arizona.

JDSU's use of liquid crystal polymer and form birefringent dielectric thin films delivers a high degree of customization and a large-area format while achieving superior optical flatness. JDSU's waveplates also provide excellent mechanical and environmental durability, an important factor for applications in the ultraviolet and with high power lasers. And, unlike other solutions, JDSU's customized, high-quality components are also highly scalable.

Visit JDSU at Photonics West booth #1327 to view demonstrations of its custom birefringent components.

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