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Mass High Tech: The Journal of New England Technology | January 21, 2008
Boston Micromachines, partner produce 'adaptive optics' kit

Cambridge Boston Micromachines Corp. has paired with Newton, N.J.-based Thorlabs Inc. to develop a new Adaptive Optics (AO) toolkit aimed at making such technologies easier and cheaper for researchers, according to executives.

The new product, which includes wavefront sensor technologies from Thorlabs and micro-electromechanical systems-based, or MEMS, deformable mirror systems from Boston Micromachines, is expected to cost four times less than traditional systems, executives said.

The tandem product also includes control and analysis software developed jointly.

Adaptive optics technologies use electromechanical systems to compensate for rapidly changing patterns in light paths. In telescopes, for example, the technology is used to compensate for the changes in light passing through the atmosphere when looking at heavenly bodies.

The technology also has applications in other areas, such as diagnosing eye diseases using retinal imaging, or earthbound, long-distance viewing.

Founded in 1999, privately held Boston Micromachines makes compact deformable mirror products for a variety of applications. The company counts NASA, Lockheed Martin and Boston University among its customers.

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