SkyWater and Lumotive announce optical beamforming chip

2nd May 2024
Harry Fowle

SkyWater and Lumotive have announced that the companies have collaborated on the production implementation optical beamforming chip.

Fully qualified and released for volume production utilising SkyWater’s unique Technology as a Service (TaaS) model, Lumotive’s product represents the first ever programmable optical metasurface that has been commercialised into a mass-producible chip.

Optical beamforming is a critical technology used in a range of applications, from laser communications and LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) to imaging and remote sensing. Lumotive’s Light Control Metasurface (LCM) technology defies the laws of physics by manipulating light at the subwavelength level using nanostructures fabricated onto the surface of a silicon chip. Beams of light can be shaped, split, and steered electronically with digital precision and repeatability. This marks a dramatic transformation over traditional mechanical methods, and enables significant system-level advantages in compactness, durability, speed, precision, power consumption, reliability, design flexibility and scalability for the next generation of industrial sensors, robotics, autonomous vehicles, and other applications that rely on accurate 3D sensing.

In less than two years, Lumotive and SkyWater collaborated on the development and release of a custom photonics process to create LM10, Lumotive’s first LCM product offering. This new process has been qualified in SkyWater’s production environment and establishes the first commercially available chip-scale beam steering solution for solid-state LIDAR. LM10 is already shipping worldwide as the beam steering solution inside lead customers’ qualified 3D sensors.

The arrival of programmable LCM-powered beam steering with dynamic scanning and software-definable capabilities enables solid-state LIDAR to become the new standard for precise and adaptable interaction with the physical world in real-time. According to Lumotive Founder and CTO Dr. Gleb Akselrod, “The capability to shape and steer light with a single chip is already revolutionising applications such as 3D sensing, with many more on the horizon.”

“We are pleased to have reached this milestone with Lumotive in support of their design and production goals,” said Ross Miller, SkyWater’s SVP of Commercial and Aerospace & Defence Business. “This is another example of how we are helping enable our customers’ differentiated and disruptive technologies with unique process development and integration capabilities. Lumotive is bringing a new and exciting innovation to the field of solid-state LIDAR, enabling significantly smaller devices with lower power consumption and reduced system cost.”

Product Spotlight

Upcoming Events

View all events
Latest global electronics news
© Copyright 2024 Electronic Specifier