Three new patents for G&H
Dr. Murray Reed, CTO
We are pleased to announce that G&H was awarded three new patents for novel photonic applications and devices in the course of 2013.
All of these are based on applications filed in 2010. The first is US 8,436,630 “Corrected optical spectral responses for photoelectric devices” for Orlando inventors Alex Fong, Chris Pannell and Bob Bronson. This covers the application of our OL 490 Agile Light Source product to fully characterize solar cells by accurately duplicating a large variety of solar spectral conditions. The OL 490 uses a Texas Instruments Digital Light Processing (DLP) micro-electro-mechanical (MEMS) mirror array to create a broadband visible beam with a high resolution spectral shape that can be digitally programmed and whose output is monitored concurrently to correct for temporal variations. This technology is being used by camera and other image sensor manufacturers to characterize their products response to various lighting conditions
We also received US 8,437,081 “Composite reciprocal rotators and thermally compensated optical isolators and circulators therefrom” for inventors Chris Pannell, G&H (Orlando) and Peter MacKay, G&H (UK). The patent protects our designs for free space and fiber coupled optical isolators that have very high isolation over a wide range of temperatures. By adding a precise combination of two additional regular rotator materials, like quartz and TeO2, to a Faraday rotator, this design extends the window for -60dB isolation from a narrow operating range of only a few degrees C to more than 30 degrees C.
The final patent we received for 2013 was US 8,514,477 “Optical arrangements for imaging including an acousto-optic tunable filter and at least one Petzval lens combination” for Orlando inventors Bill Zhang and Chris Pannell, who thereby distinguished himself with a hat-trick for the year. This patent covers our application of a pioneering lens combination developed in 1840 by Joseph Petzval, at the very beginning of Daguerreotype portrait photography, to our acousto-optic tunable filter (AOTF) based HSi-440C Hyper-Spectral Imaging system. An AOTF’s response depends on the wavelength and direction of the input light and the frequency and direction of the internal acoustic waves. The combination of these effects when spectrally filtering a complex image with an AOTF can lead to significant image degradation. The HSi-440C design, shown in Figure 1 from the patent, results in the spectrally filtered beam having a very high image quality with a resolution less than the pixel size of the camera we use.
Patent US 8,514,477 covers the HSi-440C optical design
G&H is proud of these inventions and honors each inventor with a cash bonus and each patent with a plaque in our main corporate meeting room in Ilminster.
Intellectual Property management at G&H is driven by a quarterly IP Committee meeting involving both technology and business leaders from across the company. In 2013 we significantly expanded our UK patent filing activity with an expectation of “Patent Box” tax relief. We have focused our IP generation on our major emerging technology areas and filed seven more patent applications related to spectral imaging systems, fiber optics and semiconductor laser devices in 2013. We also continue to drive strongly the applications already submitted to patent offices and expect several more patents to be granted in 2014.