Newark-based photonics startup gathering speed

A custom-designed double glove box allows ultimate control of atmospheric conditions by allowing for a low moisture non-oxygen (nitrogen) environment, according to Lightwave Logic's website. / ROBERT CRAIG/THE NEWS JOURNAL

A Newark-based, publicly traded startup developing applications for telecommunications and computer information says it is moving rapidly toward commercializing its technology.

Lightwave Logic works in photonics applications for optical computing, the military and telecommunications – a commercial market with an insatiable appetite for high speed delivery.

The firm is developing what it describes as the next big thing for the high-speed, fiber optic industry. It addresses frustrations with bandwidth bottlenecks – information racing at once into fiber-optic lines, slowing down systems.

Lightwave’s goal is to commercialize organic nonlinear elecro-optical polymer technology, designed to replace expensive inorganic crystals used in modern-day communications devices, networks and data systems with polymers, hence increasing speed and reducing cost.

“I’m really excited about the progress and the reason for that is for the first time in the company’s history, we were able to demonstrate what would be called modulation in a photonic device using our materials” said Tom Zelibor, chief executive officer. “That is something that the company has talked about for a long time.”

Modulation is a way of converting digital information into pulses of light. The break-through technology has remarkable growth potential, and once commercialized could be used in anything to enhance high speed computing from an electric car to every computer, Zelibor said.

“Not only are the materials capable of moving much more data but they are also capable of running at much, much lower voltage, and that translates into an unbelievable cost savings for data centers,” said Steven Cordovano, director of corporate communications. “This is why its such an unbelievable opportunity.”

The firm is on a trajectory to approach potential partners with prototype devices toward the next 18 months, Zelibor said.

“Technologically, we are closer now than we’ve ever been,” Zelibor said. “Importantly, we are transitioning from merely developing the materials to actually designing photonics devices. We’re putting together a time-line right now for where we expect to be in 2014 and beyond.”

Contact Cori Anne Natoli at (302) 324-2855, on Twitter @CoriAnneNatoli, Facebook Cori Natoli-News Journal, or email cnatoli@delawareonline.com.