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Finisar Shows VCSELs For Depth-Sensing At Photonics West 2018

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Company also launches high-speed photodetector and demonstrates WaveSource Programmable laser technology

At Photonics West, Finisar will be demonstrating VCSEL arrays used in depth-sensing applications such as 3D facial recognition in consumer mobile devices. The company will also introduce a new high-speed photodetector and demonstrate WaveSource Programmable Laser technology from its Test & Measurement portfolio.

VCSEL technology offers advantages of superior performance over a large temperature range with a small footprint when compared to traditional edge-emitting lasers, and high optical efficiency and fast response when compared to LEDs.

This advanced technology has enabled many new applications including 3D facial recognition, augmented reality, automotive in-cabin sensing and LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) for autonomous vehicles, using both Structured Light and Time-of-Flight (ToF) depth-sensing techniques.

Finisar’s expertise in VCSEL technology stems from its roots with Honeywell when the technology was first commercialised in 1996. Since that time, Finisar has continued to lead the market in R&D, design, and manufacturing techniques that enable mass production, critical in emerging high-volume applications. VCSEL reference designs will be released later this year.

“The adoption of VCSEL technology by the most successful companies in the world is extremely exciting, and, as the broadest based optical company, Finisar is in the best position to capitalise on the opportunity," said Todd Swanson, EVP of sales, marketing, and R&D at Finisar. “With VCSEL advantages of superior performance and high optical efficiency, we have opened the doors to new market opportunities, specifically in consumer and automotive, that will transform security and safety."

New Photodetector for High-Power Applications

Finisar has also introduced a new member of the high-speed photodetector product family. The 20GHz Ultra-high RF Power Detector features the highest RF output power currently available on the market for devices with a similar operating frequency. With ultra-high RF output power and uncooled operation, this product opens new applications areas.

Typical applications include Radio over Fibre, analogue photonic links, and microwave photonics. The device is based on an MUTC (Modified Uni-Traveling Carrier) photodetector chip capable of delivering up to 23dBm RF output power, and enables cost savings for the end-user by removing the need for expensive and power-hungry RF amplifiers.

WaveSource Technology Demonstration

In addition, Finisar will have a demonstration of its WaveSource Programmable Laser. The WaveSource Programmable Laser provides highly accurate wavelength scans as might be required in sensor systems and in optical component testing. It is specifically designed for system integration as well as for applications in the optical lab. It covers the entire C-band and provides a high scanning speed beyond 300 nm/s. The WaveSource Programmable Laser is demonstrated as part of a Terahertz Spectrometer System which has been set up in collaboration with the Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute from Berlin, Germany.


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