Getting Light Speed Returns from One of the Best Technology Sectors

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Getting Light Speed Returns from One of the Best Technology Sectors


One of the best technology sectors right now has nothing to do with Apple, Google, or Facebook. It’s in the area of photonics. In simplest terms, photonics is the science of light.

I want you to think about it for a moment – think about how, since almost the birth of humankind, light and optics have been there. From primitive people’s fires to whale oil lamps to the electric light bulb to lasers – humankind’s progression has been marked by advancements in the harnessing of light.

Fleshing out the definition a bit, photonics is the technology of generating and harnessing light and other forms of radiant energy whose unit is the photon. Photonics involves cutting edge uses of lasers, optics, fiber optics, and electro-optical devices in a wide range of applications.

Photonics has taken its place alongside electronics as a critical and rapidly growing technology of the 21st century. The global photonics market is forecast to be a $720 billion market by 2020, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 35%.

Welcome to the Photonics Century

Photonics-based applications are today used in a wide range of industries from industrial automation to medical diagnostics to scientific research.

Lasers in particular are displacing conventional technologies because they can do many jobs faster, better and more economically. Finding ways to make products more efficiently is an absolute must for today’s manufacturers. That’s why I strongly believe photonics and lasers are a must own sector for you and all my other readers.

One sector where photonics has become crucial is communications. Coherent light beams (lasers) have a high bandwidth and can carry far more information than radio or microwave frequencies. Fiber optics allow light carrying data to be piped through cables, replacing old copper cables: an absolute necessity in today’s world of big data, cloud computing and video streaming.

Another way photonics has entered our everyday lives is solid state lighting. Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are a high performance, low-cost, green alternative to incandescent light bulbs.

Then there is LiDAR (laser radar systems), which is used in the aerospace industry and is crucial for the future success of autonomous vehicles, those self-driving cars that are frequently in the news these days.

Photonics technology has become ubiquitous.

Photonics has also become a key component in many manufacturing processes. Think laser welding, drilling and cutting as well as all the precision measurements needed by manufacturers that is provided by lasers.


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