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Luceda Photonics receives growth finance for the development and marketing of its advanced framework for photonic IC design

Imec’s investment arm Fidimec and the Flemish spin-off investment fund SOFI I are investing EUR 340k in Luceda Photonics, a joint spin-off from Ghent University, the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and imec. Luceda Photonics will use this financing to start commercialization of its photonics design software and to continue to invest in R&D for new product features.

LUCEDA Photonics was founded in June 2014 as a spin-off from Ghent University (UGent), the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and imec. The core of Luceda Photonics’ product offering is the IPKISS design framework. It covers the complete photonic IC design flow from component design and simulation through circuit definition and layout, all the way to tape-out and testing. Its state of the art component library builds on years of design experience gathered over more than 300 validated designs. Other highlights of the IPKISS environment include CAPHE, a circuit simulation tool for complex optical circuits and B-CALM, a GPU accelerated FDTD simulator.

The IPKISS framework was originally developed by UGent’s Photonics Research Group and imec’s associated lab at UGent, while the VUB’s B-PHOT team developed the B-CALM software.

Erwin De Baetselier, CEO of Luceda Photonics: “We want photonic IC designers to enjoy the same first-time-right design experience as electronics IC designers. IPKISS is a state of the art environment that makes the design flow for photonic ICs robust and will save our customers considerable design time. The open nature of the IPKISS toolset permits the seamless integration of various third party or even in-house tools and measurement capabilities. The photonics designers will gain insight, repeatability and accuracy of their entire design process.”

Prof. Roel Baets, photonics professor at UGent and head of imec’s associated photonics lab at UGent: “Photonic ICs are on their way to become a mainstream industrial reality in the datacom, telecom and sensor markets. Together, UGent’s Photonics Research Group and imec’s associated photonics lab at UGent have invested many years to develop a unique design framework for photonics ICs. It is the right time now to bring this to the market. We are convinced that Luceda Photonics will have a substantial and lasting impact in this emerging industry”

Prof. Hugo Thienpont, head of VUB’s B-PHOT team: “By adding B-CALM to its product portfolio, Luceda Photonics offers its customers the unique possibility to efficiently design coupling structures to sub-wavelength plasmonic opto-electronic components. This puts Luceda Photonics in pole position for the design of ultra-high speed photonic ICs as used in datacenters and supercomputers”

About Luceda Photonics

Luceda Photonics wants photonic IC engineers to enjoy the same first-time-right design experience as electronic IC designers. Luceda Photonics combines over 50 years of experience in photonic integrated circuit design. The team’s expertise in the development of process design kits (PDKs) and the design and validation of photonic integrated circuits is used by several research institutes and industrial R&D teams worldwide.

About SOFI I

Through the SOFI I fund, the Flemish region provides financing to turn ideas of promising researchers into new products, services and processes. SOFI I (Spin-Off Financing Instrument) is a 20 million Euro fund that provides venture capital to new and innovative companies that originate from the success stories of the Flemish Strategic Research Centres (imec: nanotechnology, iMind: ICT, VIB: biotechnology, and VITO: energy and sustainable technologies). The fund is coordinated by PMV (ParticipatieMaatschappij Vlaanderen).

About imec

Imec performs world-leading research in nanoelectronics. Imec leverages its scientific knowledge with the innovative power of its global partnerships in ICT, healthcare and energy. Imec delivers industry-relevant technology solutions. In a unique high-tech environment, its international top talent is committed to providing the building blocks for a better life in a sustainable society. Imec is headquartered in Leuven, Belgium, and has offices in Belgium, the Netherlands, Taiwan, US, China, India and Japan. Its staff of over 2,080 people includes more than 670 industrial residents and guest researchers. In 2013, imec’s revenue (P&L) totaled 332 million euro. Further information on imec can be found at www.imec.be. Stay up to date about what’s happening at imec with the monthly imec magazine, available for tablets and smartphones (as an app for iOS and Android), or via the website www.imec.be/imecmagazine

Imec is a registered trademark for the activities of IMEC International (a legal entity set up under Belgian law as a “stichting van openbaar nut”), imec Belgium (IMEC vzw supported by the Flemish Government), imec the Netherlands (Stichting IMEC Nederland, part of Holst Centre which is supported by the Dutch Government), imec Taiwan (IMEC Taiwan Co.) and imec China (IMEC Microelectronics (Shanghai) Co. Ltd.) and imec India (Imec India Private Limited).

About FIDIMEC

FIDIMEC NV is the investment vehicle of imec supporting the creation and growth of its spin-off companies.

About the Photonics Research Group at Ghent University

The Photonics Research Group of UGent, with a research staff of about 70 scientists, is active in the field of photonic integration on silicon IC platforms and on the application thereof in information and communication technology, in sensing, and in life sciences. The group focuses on new concepts for photonic integrated circuits, on the underlying technologies and on the associated design methodologies. Business Development at the Photonics Research Group is coordinated by Plateau, the photonics innovation center of UGent supported by IOF (Industrieel Onderzoeksfonds).

Ghent University (UGent) is a comprehensive university with over 41,000 students and 9000 staff members. UGent offers bachelor, master and PhD education programmes through its 11 faculties.

About the Brussels Photonics Team at Vrije Universiteit Brussel

The Brussels Photonics Team B-PHOT of Vrije Universiteit Brussel is active in the field of micro-miniaturized photonics.  With its micro-optical design platform, its wafer-scale polymer optics prototyping line, and its large-scale micro-optical measurement centre in clean room conditions, B-PHOT is currently among the world-leaders in optical modelling, optical characterization, low-cost rapid prototyping, and proof-of-concept demonstration of micro-optical modules and micro-photonic systems.

The Vrije Universiteit Brussel, located in the capital of Europe, provides bachelor, master and doctoral education to about 13.000 students. It is organized into 8 faculties that accomplish the three central missions of the university: education, research and service to the community.

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