Orthogonal laser startup raises seed funding
The company is a 2020 spin-off from Glasgow university based on semiconductor research led by Professor Richard Hogg and is coming to market with fabless production model, outsourcing fabrication to semiconductor foundry partners.
PCSELs are a class of semiconductor laser that utilise a 2D grating structure which scatters light linearly and orthogonally. This means PCSELs light emission is out of plane, emanating from the laser’s top surface, the feedback is in-plane.
Out of plane, orthogonal, surface emission potentially offers a cost advantage for lasers, as it makes them easier to package and incorporate into PCBs and electronic assemblies. The out-of-plane emission is enabled and stabilised by a 2D grating structure made of a photonic crystal, creating feedback and single mode emission. The PCSEL structure provides advantages in data rate, wavelength and power performance when compared to equivalent EELs or VCSELs, the company claims.
“Our PCSELs produce the speed performance of EELs and VCSELs, whilst their tested and packaged cost is 50 percent that of EELs and they deliver over 10 times the power of VCSELs,” claims Neil Martin, CEO of Vector Photonics, on the company’s website.
The company makes use of additive manufacturing, including metal and plastic printing for the production of lasers for lidar and optical sensing.
The equity funding complements three UK government grants worth £2.4 million previously provided. The government grants, which came through Innovate UK, are ‘LOCAL’, optimising PCSEL technology for Datacoms; ‘Bloodline’, which is for 3D metal printing; and ‘Facilitator’, which is for 3D plastic printing.
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