With applications in medicine, manufacturing, defense, aerospace, energy, communications and security, the field of optics and photonics brings a surge of high tech activity to the region. Home to one of only three degree-granting optics universities in the United States and a host of specialized companies, the Corridor is at the heart of some of the world’s greatest advancements in the industry.
Alex Fong, Senior Vice President, Life Science and Instrumentation, Business Development
Gooch and Housego
Growing out of military efforts and supported by Corridor universities, the photonics industry has thrived in the Florida High Tech Corridor. The University of Central Florida’s (UCF) Center for Research and Education in Optics and Lasers (CREOL), the only college-level program of its kind, serves as a center of excellence in research and education, as well as an economic driver for the industry. CREOL has produced numerous startups through its incubator as part of the internationally recognized UCF Business Incubation Program.
- Home to world-renowned, college-level optics and lasers program
- 100 companies in the region
- Employs 23,000+ people
Understanding the science of light has led to modern discoveries from the liquid crystal displays of computer monitors to the backbone of the Internet and much of today’s technology. As the industry’s leading organization for the state, the Florida Photonics Cluster (FPC) brings the industry together by supporting the growth and profitability of photonics companies in Florida. The diverse and specialized companies throughout the Corridor represent a major portion of companies statewide and are leading the way in this high tech industry.
Big players such as Northrop Grumman, Harris Corporation, Lockheed Martin, L-3 Communications and DRS Technologies use photonics and optics across their manufacturing divisions, utilizing lasers and fiber optics in defense and communication applications. With more than 98 companies employing more than 2,000 people directly engaged in optics and photonics, the Florida High Tech Corridor is a bustling area of activity in this growing industry.
- American Photonics
- BEAM Engineering for Advanced Measurements Co.
- DRS Technologies
- E.R. Precision Optical Corporation
- Gooch and Housego
- Harris Corporation
- L-3 Communications
- Lee Laser
- LightPath Technologies
- Lockheed Martin
- Naked Optics Corp.
- Northrop Grumman
- Ocean Optics
- Pangolin Laser Systems Inc.
- SemiConductor Devices USA
- Triple Play Communications
Optics and Photonics Organizations and Institutes
- Florida Manufacturing Extension Partnership
- Florida Photonics Cluster
- IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Orlando Chapter
- International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE)
- Laser Institute of America (LIA)
- Open Photonics
- Optical Society of America
- Society for Information Display (SID), University of Central Florida Chapter
- University of Central Florida College of Optics and Photonics Center for Research and Education in Optics and Lasers (CREOL)
- University of Central Florida Photonics Incubator