EUROPEAN PHOTONICS: Life sciences the focus of EPIC's anniversary event keynote

The European Photonics Consortium (EPIC) celebrated its 10th anniversary on December 13, 2013, with the help of 160 supporters from 26 countries at a dedicated event in Brussels, Belgium. The event's keynote presentation, by the micro- and nano-electronics research center imec (Leuven, Belgium), focused on exciting near-term possibilities in biomedicine and life sciences enabled by optoelectronics—ideas that reverberated in subsequent panel discussions.

EPIC president Drew Nelson presented the 2013 EPIC Phoenix Award, recognizing entrepreneurship to Advanced Fiberoptic Engineering CEO Nick Martin
EPIC president Drew Nelson presented the 2013 EPIC Phoenix Award, recognizing entrepreneurship to Advanced Fiberoptic Engineering CEO Nick Martin.

The event also included a session on EU funding, which attracted 70 companies with extensive experience. There, EPIC promised to organize joint meetings with other sectors such as life sciences in which photonics play an enabling role. In addition, it featured meetings with the European Commission; recognition of EPIC by The Optical Society (OSA) for sustained promotion of photonics in Europe for a decade; and presentation of EPIC's Phoenix Award to Advanced Fibreoptic Engineering (AFE; Oxon, England) in recognition of the company's persistence and spirit of entrepreneurship. AFE supplies to the biomedical industry, among others.

EPIC president Drew Nelson asked for regulations to be aligned and supportive of Europe's priorities, pointing out that GaAS and InP have been placed by the European Chemicals Agency on the Substances of Very High Concern (SVHC) list, and that EPIC asked for a diligence process.

Anniversary event sponsors included CEA-LETI, CSEM, Edmund Optics, and Laser World of Photonics.

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