The industrial world is undergoing a transformation – and demand for our optical systems has set new records. Jenoptik is investing it its capacity with a view to the future.
The process of digitalization is well underway
And it continues to reach new heights as our latest sales figures indicate: Our Optics & Life Science segment recorded 17 percent growth in 2017, reflecting how the new digital world continues to require a hardwired technological foundation. The semiconductor equipment industry, which grew more rapidly in 2017 than it has in a long time, is in particular need of our optical systems as is the automotive industry with its interactive cars along with the automation and information and communication technologies of Industry 4.0.
We are now preparing ourselves for even greater demand
We are expanding our capacities. A new wafer stepper at our Huntsville optics site, for example, has been manufacturing microoptical modules since the beginning of 2018 – all while advancing our global division of labor. A dome theater for testing and demonstrating laser projection lenses went online in Florida along with a clean room in which high-precision optical assemblies can be manufactured for the semiconductor equipment and aerospace industries. And our new Silicon Valley branch in Fremont, California is just around the corner from any number of trailblazers in the digital world.
Expanded clean room space and a new wafer stepper helped to adapt our manufacturing capacity in Huntsville, Alabama to the rising demand for microoptical precision components.
Traveling new paths for high-performance optics
One idea, long viewed as incompatible with high-performance optics, took hold in our optics business in 2017. This runs from the production and coating of lenses, mounting technology and validation, and continues through to serial production: A technology platform allows for the creation of individual high-performance optical systems more rapidly, efficiently, and cost-effectively. This is of particular use in the semiconductor equipment industry with a view to future generations of chips. The project was recognized with the 2017 Jenoptik Innovation Award.
The new magic word is the platform, which we now use to develop high-performance optics to meet individual requirements, analogue to processes in the automotive industry.
A place for the incomplete
Business ideas are now being tested in protected space, which is ideal for learning, correcting, failing – or whatever is necessary in the creative process. Each experience is taken on board without judgement for the next phase of development. Our optics digital business team is also playing a large role in these developments, keeping tabs on overarching market trends, beyond daily business, maintaining contact with other Jenoptik segments, having a view on expert communities and attending congresses. Potential customers can indeed be found in unexpected places in today’s digital world.