Thorlabs acquires Covega from Gemfire

MARCH 25, 2009 -- Thorlabs gains the indium phosphide and lithium niobate foundry capabilities of Covega; Gemfire plans to focus on PLCs and integrated subsystem products.

MARCH 25, 2009 - Thorlabs Inc. (search Lightwave for Thorlabs) of Newton, NJ, and Gemfire Corp. (search Lightwave for Gemfire) of Fremont, CA, have jointly announced the Thorlabs acquisition of the assets of Gemfire-owned Covega Corp. (search Lightwave for Covega), Jessup, MD. Covega is a provider of indium phosphide (InP) and lithium niobate (LiNbO3) components and modules to the telecommunication, medical, industrial, defense, and test and measurement markets.

Covega is a vertically integrated company with full InP and LiNbO3 foundry capabilities, including device design and modeling, wafer growth and fabrication, and advanced E/O device packaging. Its products include superluminescent light-emitting diodes (SLEDs), Fabry-Perot lasers, tunable laser gain chips, semiconductor optical amplifiers (SOAs), and LiNbO3 modulators.

Alex Cable, president and founder of Thorlabs, says of the new acquisition, "Covega comes to the Thorlabs family with a new suite of optical technologies that Thorlabs looks forward to offering to its diverse customer base. We are committed to ensuring continued access to the broad array of products that Covega currently manufacturers."

Gemfire says its divestiture of Covega will allow the company to focus more on its planar lightwave circuits (PLCs) and integrated subsystems, such as its new ultralow-loss arrayed waveguide grating (AWG), compact athermal AWG, and VMUX, a high-performance DWDM variable multiplexer module. The Gemfire PhotonIC planar-processed silica-on-silicon process is designed for integrating multiple functions into more compact, intelligent modules such as its range of add/drop Mux designs used in ROADM line cards. Athermal AWGs allow multiplexing and demultiplexing of DWDM signals over a range of operating temperatures, without temperature stabilization or moving parts.

Rick Tompane, Gemfire chief executive, says, "We are pleased that the Covega product line fit so well within the Thorlabs family, assuring all customers will continue to be supported by a world class team."

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