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Optical components

Bandwidth9 Goes Chapter 11

The rumors of Bandwidth9 Inc.'s insolvency were not exaggerated. The laser startup filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the Northern District of California (Oakland) court on Friday.

Rumors that this was about to happen were rife earlier that day (see Iolon's Alright ).

The court filing lists both assets and debts of Bandwidth9 as "$1 million to $10 million" -- which compares with total funding that was well over $100 million. The company announced an $80 million round in November 2000 and most likely had other financing rounds, bridge loans, and debt transactions after that date (see Bandwidth9 Raises $80 Million).

Bandwidth9 got its start making long-wavelength (1550nm) Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Lasers (VCSELs). It appeared to have shut up shop in February 2003, but it then reemerged, making shorter-wavelength (1310nm) VCSELs, earlier this year (see Bandwidth9 to Suspend Operations, Bandwidth9 Goes Dark, and Bandwidth9 Thinks Shorter).

The company could come back again, as Chapter 11 isn't always a death sentence. In order to do so, it would have to find some pretty brave backers in a technology segment where there's been more ground cleared than anyone can plow.

— Peter Heywood, Founding Editor, Light Reading

cw.774 12/5/2012 | 1:22:56 AM
re: Bandwidth9 Goes Chapter 11 What's the trouble w/long wave VCSEL's anyway?
I'm thinking it was all just a threat to drive down conventional FP, DFB LD prices.

What's the technical weakness. Reliability? Anyone care to go conspiracy-crazy here? - the latter often stupid but entertaining.
o-man 12/5/2012 | 1:22:53 AM
re: Bandwidth9 Goes Chapter 11 infant mortality is said to be the blame...

Does any one making a 1310 VCSEL care to share thoughts?
bottomfeeder 12/5/2012 | 1:22:52 AM
re: Bandwidth9 Goes Chapter 11 I believe infant mortality was a short wave VCSEL problem, not a long wave problem.
o-man 12/5/2012 | 1:22:50 AM
re: Bandwidth9 Goes Chapter 11 Bottomfeeder said:

I believe infant mortality was a short wave VCSEL problem, not a long wave problem.

So the short wavelength VCSEL problems will not translate to long wave VCSEL's?

Dr.Q 12/5/2012 | 1:22:30 AM
re: Bandwidth9 Goes Chapter 11 The short wavelength VCSEL problem (~800-900 nm, GaAs) does not translate to long wavelength (~1300-1500 InP) reliability because they are different material systems.
The key to their demise is either
(A) They were chasing the elusive tunable laser market with external cavity tuned VCSEL [I've lost track of those questing for the Holy Grail, so don't remember if BW9 was one or not]
(B) Attempting to make low cost direct modulated VCSEL's, where the problem is low power, and difficulty coupling into the fiber because of the mode side disparity.

-Q

likely to be the difficulty of application
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