Tech­no­logy • Pro­jects

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Inno­va­tive FreE­form tech­no­lo­gies

Since August 1, 2018, 9 com­pa­nies and 2 rese­arch insti­tu­tes have been working on the deve­lo­p­ment of free­form opti­cal sys­tems, focu­sing on the spec­tral broad­band UV-VIS-IR range. As a result, free­form optics for broa­der app­li­ca­ti­ons and pro­duc­tion in hig­her quan­ti­ties are to be deve­lo­ped, which will enable the deve­lo­p­ment of new mar­kets.

The three-year pro­ject builds on the very suc­cess­ful coope­ra­tion of the part­ners in the growth core fo+, which was awar­ded the Sci­ence Prize of the Stif­ter­ver­band für Ver­bund­for­schung in May 2018. The total pro­ject volume amounts to almost EUR 27 mil­lion.

The pro­ject is fun­ded by the Federal Minis­try of Edu­ca­tion and Rese­arch (BMBF) wit­hin the frame­work of the »Inno­va­tive Regio­nal Growth Cores« pro­gramme. Opto­Net mana­ges the office of the growth core.

   

Inno­va­tive Opti­CAL FIBERS

18 com­pa­nies and three rese­arch insti­tu­tes form the inno­va­tive regio­nal growth core ›Tailo­red Opti­cal Fibers‹ [TOF]. They are deve­lo­ping a joint tech­no­logy plat­form for tailor-made spe­cial fibers for new app­li­ca­ti­ons by mid 2020.

In the long term, the coope­ra­tion will not only result in inno­va­tive high-tech pro­ducts such as high-tem­pe­ra­ture fibers for raw mate­rial explo­ra­tion, fiber sen­sors for mini­mally inva­sive sur­gery or smart illu­mi­na­ted sur­faces for vehi­cle inte­riors, but also in a net­work that will pro­vide tailo­red solu­ti­ons for indi­vi­dual cus­to­mer requi­re­ments in other mar­ket seg­ments.

The pro­ject is fun­ded by the Federal Minis­try of Edu­ca­tion and Rese­arch (BMBF) wit­hin the frame­work of the pro­gramme »Inno­va­tive Regio­nal Growth Cores«. Opto­Net mana­ges the office of the growth core.

   

The impro­ve­ment of ima­ging per­for­mance by redu­cing sur­face ripple (so-cal­led ›medium-fre­quency errors‹) on sophisti­ca­ted opti­cal com­pon­ents is one of the core objec­ti­ves of the pro­ject. In addi­tion, uni­fied for­ma­lisms for descrip­tion are to be deri­ved for all aspects of the deve­lo­p­ment of free-form optics – from opti­cal design to metro­logy. Results and methods of the rese­arch pro­ject aim at a time and cost effec­tive pro­duc­tion chain of high-pre­cision free­form len­ses and free­form mir­rors with mini­mal devia­ti­ons over the whole range of rele­vant spa­tial fre­quen­cies (shape, wavi­ness, and micro-rough­ness). The pro­ject is the result of the Opto­Net inter­na­tio­na­liz­a­tion pro­ject [Glo­WIN] and is fun­ded by the Ger­man Federal Minis­try of Edu­ca­tion and Rese­arch.

Micro­flui­dics and lab-on-chip sys­tems are key tech­no­lo­gies for sim­pli­fy­ing, minia­tu­ri­sing and acce­le­ra­ting ana­ly­ses in the life sci­en­ces, thus brin­ging them from the labo­ra­tory to the point of care. Clas­si­cal micro­flui­dic sys­tems are based on con­ti­nuous volu­mes of ana­lyte which are pum­ped through appro­priate chan­nels into reac­tion cham­bers. Howe­ver, modern digi­tal micro­flui­dics offer com­ple­tely new pos­si­bi­li­ties for mani­pu­la­tion (moving, mixing, sepa­ra­ting, fee­ding, dischar­ging) and opti­cal exci­ta­tion or ana­ly­sis. The pro­ject [Digif­lui­dics] paves the way to a cost-effec­tive, digi­tal and fle­xi­ble manu­fac­tu­ring approach for digi­tal micro­flui­dics using an inno­va­tive inkjet tech­no­logy. Com­plete and opti­cally trans­pa­rent elec­tro­wet­ting struc­tures can be prin­ted on injec­tion-mol­ded micro­flui­dic sub­stra­tes, thus com­bi­ning two low-cost manu­fac­tu­ring tech­no­lo­gies to pro­duce digi­tal micro­flui­dic sys­tems. The pro­ject is the result of the Opto­Net inter­na­tio­na­liz­a­tion pro­ject [Glo­WIN] and is fun­ded by the Ger­man Federal Minis­try of Edu­ca­tion and Rese­arch.