Thorlabs Adds MIR Laser Capabilities to its Portfolio
November 19, 2012
Newton, NJ and Andover, MA – November 19, 2012 – Thorlabs announced today the acquisition of Maxion Technologies
Inc., a world leader in the development and commercialization of mid IR turn-key semiconductor lasers, from Physical Sciences Inc.
(PSI). Located in College Park, MD, Maxion Technologies was founded in 2000 by a team of scientists and engineers from the
United States Army Research Laboratory. Their interband cascade (IC) and quantum cascade (QC) laser products, which provide
output in the 3 – 12 micron range, are integrated into product solutions aimed at improving chemical sensing, infrared
countermeasures, and free-space optical communications.
The Maxion group will join the Thorlabs Quantum Electronics (TQE) team, which is located a short distance away in Jessup,
MD. Alex Cable, President and Founder of Thorlabs, said of the new acquisition, “I am pleased to welcome the Maxion team to
the Thorlabs family. The addition of IC/QC lasers is a perfect complement to TQE’s existing semiconductor laser technologies,
which include InP molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) wafer growth and volume wafer fabrication / optoelectronic packaging infrastructure.”
The move leverages Thorlabs’ already significant investment in expanding TQE’s design and manufacturing capability to include
high-power GaAs laser diodes and state-of-the art MEMS-based tunable vertical cavity surface emitting lasers (VCSELs).
With the addition of strong QC/IC laser design expertise and Sb-based MBE growth, Thorlabs will be able to manufacture a
comprehensive line of semiconductor lasers with output in the 0.7 – 12 micron wavelength range, providing economies of scale
to the research community and a reliable commercial partner for industrial sensing, medical, life science, and
PSI’s commitment to and ongoing development of QCL-based systems is strengthened by this partnership with Thorlabs.
According to David Green, CEO of PSI, “the acquisition of Maxion by Thorlabs provides the vertically integrated laser
fabrication capabilities that are required to introduce QCL-based systems into defense and commercial markets.
PSI remains at the forefront of these developments and looks forward to continued close collaboration with the Maxion team."
Located in Andover, Massachusetts, Physical Sciences Inc. (PSI) provides contract research and development services to a diverse
number of both government and commercial customers. Our interests span basic research, technology development, and manufacture of
specialty products. For nearly 40 years, PSI has provided our customers with state-of-the-art technology solutions.
Thorlabs, 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 consistently serve its 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.