Optical components

Scottish Startup Shrinks

Scottish components startup Terahertz Photonics Ltd. is trying to sell off its optical coatings business in an effort to keep afloat.

The company is still hoping to close a second round of funding within the next six weeks, but now reckons that it’s unrealistic to expect the £10 million (US$14.5M) it originally aimed for.

As a result, it’s laid off 13 workers, reducing its staff to 23, and it’s halted work in two of its three divisions. It’s focusing all its efforts on manufacturing planar lightwave circuits (PLCs), and it's halted work on coatings and devices (which include semiconductor optical amplifiers, interleavers, and tunable filters).

A spokesperson for Terahertz says that the coatings division is up for sale and may become the subject of a management buyout. Alternatively, it might be sold to a third party.

Terahertz is preserving its PLC business because it shows the most promise, according to the spokesperson. The company has developed some polymer-on-silicon and sol-gel silica-on-silicon technologies that promise significant advantages over conventional chemical vapor and flame hydrolysis deposition methods of making PLCs, according to the company. In particular, they reduce production costs and result in waveguides whose properties don’t vary with temperature. As a result, they eliminate the need for cooling systems.

Other companies using polymers to make athermal PLCs include Lumenon Innovative Lightwave Technology Inc. (Nasdaq: LUMM) and possibly Sparkolor Corp. (see Sparkolor Secrets Surface).

— Peter Heywood, Founding Editor, Light Reading
Peter Heywood 12/4/2012 | 11:01:44 PM
re: Scottish Startup Shrinks Looks like your wish has been granted:


Nice to see a company come through a bad patch, isn't it?

Terahertz deserves credit for recognizing that it needed to refocus in order to attract VC funding.

It sounds as though it has some cool technology.

In essence, it's developing processes that promise to eliminate some of the steps in making silica based components. The plan is to work with component manufacturers to help them produce devices at a much lower cost.

DKP 12/4/2012 | 7:30:15 PM
re: Scottish Startup Shrinks I'd really like to see this company hang in. PLCs, you just know, will be a key technology in future optical networks.

As far as selling coating chambers; it is amazing what 1.5 years will do... when Corning was buying companies for $B just for coating capacity. Now they is plenting of WDM coating capacity, but component orders have slowed. It's crazy.
Sign In