Member News - November 2016

Industry Member News

14 November, 2016


OSA Corporate Member Newsletter
In this Issue:

The Final Rule on ITAR Category XII is Released
On October 11, the Obama Administration released the final rule of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) for Category XII. Category XII encompasses fire control, laser, imaging, and guidance equipment that the United States considers critical to national security. The rule is part of the Administration's Export Control Reform effort. Category XII of the ITAR was the last category considered due to the complexity of the areas it covers. The reform effort was launched in 2009 to "build higher walls around fewer items," a departure from the previous rules to allow U.S. businesses to be more competitive.

Despite this rule being final, the Department of State has indicated that a notice of inquiry (NOI) will be issued later this year seeking public input on technical criteria to establish a bright line between military and commercial and civil systems where the criteria could not yet be identified. The NOI will ask whether some performance parameters should be reinserted into the rules where "specially designed" appears in the new rule. Such parameters must be carefully chosen, however, to assure that they are truly unique to the military, and are not already in production.

The Commerce Department will also be monitoring the export license application process going forward to see if the new rules are working effectively. Adjustments may be made in the future based on this feedback as a philosophy of continuous improvement.

We urge companies to carefully review the rule to find out how it will impact your organization. To learn more about the new rules, visit the OSA Washington Updates webpage for the links to both the Department of State and Department of Commerce rules. OSA hosted a webinar entitled "Learn about the New Export Control Regulations" featuring Matt Borman, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Administration, on October 17. To sign up and listen to an archived version of that webcast, click here. Kevin Wolf, the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Administration of the United States Department of Commerce, spoke on November 3 at the OSA Laser Congress in Boston.

This is an example of the importance of advocacy. In May 2015, a proposed rule was released and over 100 companies including OSA voiced our concern with the proposal. OSA also partnered with other societies to educate members of Congress about the negative effects the rules would have for the optics and photonics industry. The results included letters by members of Congress to the Administration expressing concern over the rules. In February 2016, Dr. Gregory Quarles, OSA Chief Scientist and a member of the Sensors and Instrumentation Technical Advisory Meeting (SITAC) of the Department of Commerce, testified before the House Small Business Committee and outlined three areas where the proposed rule would affect the optics community and small businesses the most: impact on the time to market for regulated products and components, the cost of compliance and the need to enhance government export assistance resources, particularly for small business.

The Optical Society and our community's efforts resulted in a second proposed rule released in February 2016. The Departments of Commerce, State and Defense clearly heard the call from our community and addressed many of the concerns raised. The second rule was a step in the right direction. Another comment period was issued on the second rule and again The Optical Society weighed in along with others in the community.

For more information, please contact Laura Kolton at

Laser Companies are Doing Better Than Expected
A key point is that most of the large laser manufacturers are doing better than the overall indicators would suggest. Something is going well for them, but what is it? OIDA reviewed this question and the laser and machine tools market for the Executive Forum of the OSA Laser Congress, on November 3 in Boston.

The figure shows four companies that strongly overlap with laser sales: IPG Photonics, II-VI, Trumpf, and Coherent. Their long term results are laudable, ranging from 4% to 20% compound annual growth for the periods shown, even considering the downturn of 2008-2009. Newport and Rofin showed slower growth through the period at 3% compounded annually, and became recent acquisition targets. MKS Instruments closed its acquisition of Newport in May 2016, and Coherent is currently in the process of acquiring Rofin. When it becomes complete, it will make Coherent the largest laser manufacturer in the world.

This combined performance is better than the end markets and the global economy overall. Economic output is slowing globally, including in China (although China's tech sector is doing better than its overall economy). Gardner Research says that the global production of metalworking machine tools hasn't grown since 2012, falling from $100 billion in 2012 to $80 billion last year. And several major sectors of photonics haven't done well in the last two years, partly due to inventory due to slower demand, and partly due to the effect of converting values to U.S. dollars as it gained strength over the period.

What's the explanation? Well, every company has its unique story, but several factors converge. First, some (but not all) growth is from acquisition among these companies. Second, these companies have gained share against several companies that are not listed here, companies that were formerly positioned in CO2 or lamp-pumped lasers. And third, laser-based machine tools continue to gain share against non-laser solutions in the much larger machine tool market. At $80 billion, it is still much greater than market of laser-based tool sales, now around $12 billion, leaving a lot of room for growth in industrial laser sales.

And finally, if real estate is all about location, location, location, then for these companies it was all about position, position, position. They were all positioned in some products and markets that did well through the period. Many companies execute well and remain valuable investments, but weren't positioned as fortuitously.

For more information, contact Tom Hausken at Tom Hausken.

Plan Your 2017 Strategy with Industry Reports Available to OIDA Members
Industry leaders worldwide are planning their strategy for 2017 and beyond. A winning strategy is driven by intelligence. Have you downloaded our newest industry reports?

Recent reports include a EPIC-Yole Photonics Market Summaries report. This is a set of summaries of selected photonics markets, written by the market research firm Yole Développement, and made available to OIDA members courtesy of EPIC. The report covers the following photonics markets:
  • Sensors for drones and robots
  • Gas sensor market and technology trends
  • Technology challenges for the data center: the photonics case
  • Infrared detector market
  • LED modules technology and market trends
  • OLED for lighting
  • Medical imaging
  • Microbolometers
Also, don't forget to check out the 7th edition of the International Technology Roadmap for Photovoltaic (ITRPV) roadmap, released originally in 2015 and updated in March 2016. The ITRPV roadmap is created and regularly updated by the globally leading manufacturers of crystalline silicon (c-Si) products (wafer, cell, and module). The objective of the ITPRV is to ensure constant cost reduction and efficiency increase through technology advancements in the performance of c-Si products. ITRPV cites several benefits to the roadmap, including (but not limited to): a guideline for the crystalline silicon PV supply chain, targets for R&D institutes, and a source for PV standardization. The ITRPV is administered by the German group VDMA. Read the Report Now

All OSA Industry Development Associates members have free access to all reports. We encourage you to browse the Publication Library to see everything available to you.

Welcome New Industry Members Top

Congratulations to Rick Plympton, CEO of Optimax and OIDA Member
The RRPC Leadership Award recipient for 2016 is Rick Plympton, CEO of Optimax Systems, for working with fellow members and the community to promote the Rochester Region's Optics, Photonics and Imaging Industry. Plympton is recognized for his career work with the regional and national optics, photonics and imaging industries. In his position as a board member with the New York Photonics cluster Plympton has initiated strategies, helped fund initiatives and promoted New York's OPI industry for nearly two decades.

Browse these New Engineering & Lab Notes published in Applied Optics
Engineering and Laboratory Notes (E&L Notes), from Applied Optics, highlight laboratory techniques and hands-on skills technicians and specialists can utilize for the design, analysis, fabrication, integration, alignment, and measurement of optical components and systems. E&L Notes Editor Brian Monacelli sums up the initiative here.

Applied Optics recently published these E&L Notes: Looking to highlight your company's innovative techniques? Applied Optics continues to seek E&L Notes to publish. Submit yours today.

PIC Training Silicon Valley
After the first successful PIC training last year with enthusiastic reactions, a second training is now organized, this time on the west coast in Santa Clara, California. The training, which is held from Nov 14 through 18, is a one-stop-shop and covers all the material systems, whether Silicon, InP-based, or dielectrics such as TriPleX (SiO2/Si3N4). The training is supported by a broad consortium of over 18 companies and is hands-on as well as in-depth. For more information and registration, please see

OIDA Members Network and Build Valuable Relationships
Membership in OIDA provides optics and photonics professionals with ample opportunities to build relationships as they grow their businesses and advance their careers. Take advantage of these opportunities at OSA conferences, exhibits, and special events. OIDA is your connection to the top network of professionals in the industry. Build quality relationships with new colleagues, customers and industry leaders from around the world, creating valuable connections that uncover new opportunities and grow your business.

Recent Networking Dinner in Dusseldorf,
Germany, 20 September
Going around the table starting on the left is Mehrdad Ziari, Infinera; Kevin Sparks, Corning; Melissa Russell, OIDA; Andrew Schmitt, Cignal AI; Paul McCormick, Blue Sky Instruments; Beth Harrington, OIDA; Mitch Heins, PhoeniX Software; Niek Nijenhuis, PhoeniX Software; Alan Evans, Corning; Jim McCormick, Blue Sky Instruments; Frank Chang, Inphi and Andrew Dougherty, OIDA.

VIP Networking Event at OSA Frontiers in Optics
in Rochester, New York, USA, 20 October
Left to right: Martin Seifert, Nufern; Claudio Mazzali, Corning Optical Communications, and Anjul Loiacono, Thorlabs, Inc.

Take Advantage of OFC's Public Relations Opportunities
Maximize your presence on-site by promoting your news and product announcements to media and analysts attending the show. It's never too early to get started:

Engage on social media: OFC has an active social media presence throughout the year. Make sure you are following and engaging with OFC on Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and the OFC blog. And, don't forget to use the OFC 2017 hashtag - #OFC17.

Reinforce your expertise: Writing a post (or posts) for the OFC blog is a great way to position yourself and your organization as an expert on a particular topic or industry trend. Share news on your latest research, product launch or identify the latest trend or industry issue. The PR team welcomes year-round participation. Contact for more information.

To learn about additional PR opportunities, contact the OFC PR Team:

Submit an OSA Senior Member Designation Request
If you are a well-established professional within the optics and photonics industry, you are encouraged to request an OSA Senior Member designation in recognition of your experience and accomplishments. Senior Member Requests are due no later than 28 February 2017. Visit to learn more.

Want to get even more insight and access to great discussions about optics and photonics?
Join 3,000 of your colleagues in our Optics & Photonics Industry Network LinkedIn Group. This one-of-a-kind Forum for Industry lets you participate in discussions about cutting-edge issues. Extend your professional network. Exchange information about problems, ideas and solutions. Collaborate with experts in your field. Now is the perfect time to build a relationship with fellow optics and photonics professionals!
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Take advantage of your OSA Industry Development Associates Member Benefits
We are committed to ensuring the value of your OSA Industry Development Associates Membership, so please email OSA if you have any suggestions for new programs or comments on your membership.

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OSA Industry Development Associates Committee
Thank you to the volunteers who oversee the programs and services available to the Industry Community.

 • Alex Fong,
    Gooch & Housego, Chair

 • Jean-Michel Pelaprat,
    A2E Partnership Inc.

 • Henrik Skov
    Ibsen Photonics

 • Simin Cai,
• John Dexheimer,
    Lightwave Advisors

 • James Fisher,

 • Fred Leonberger,
    Technologies, LLC

 • Claudio Mazzali,
    Corning, Inc.
 • Mike Mielke,

 • Martin Seifert,

 • Costel Subran,
    Opton Laser

 • Christoph Harder,
    Harder and Partner,

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