Light is the future


keywords: Additive manufacturing LASER World of PHOTONICS


  LASER World of PHOTONICS, being held from June 22–25, shed light on the industry. The enormous energy inherent in the topic was tangible at the leading trade fair in Munich: there were around nine per cent more exhibitors (1,227) and more than ten per cent more visitors (more than 30,000) in attendance and a new hall was opened. Concrete applications attracted keen interest.

“LASER World of PHOTonICS is the most important platform for the international photonics industry” said Dr. Reinhard Pfeiffer, Messe München’s Deputy CEO. “The popularity among exhibitors is reflected in the rising demand. Many companies are presenting their products and innovations at the trade fair for the first time.” Far more than half the exhibitors and visitors came from abroad. Pfeiffer: “The enormous growth in visitors from outside Europe is also down to countries such as the USA, China and Japan.”
Dr. Wilhelm Kaenders, President of TOPTICA Photonics AG, is in no doubt: “More than ever LASER World of PHOTonICS is the world-leading Photonics marketplace. For us the joint approach, congress and exhibition, is the secret to the success and justifies our own engagement in all levels of the event.”

STARTUP World: Young entrepreneurs forge ahead
The new initiative STARTUP World was a great success. The finalists of the first PHOTonICS Award demonstrated the unlimited potential applications of Photonics in production and medicine: Nanolive, Norlase, 8strees, FEMTO-print, SwissLitho AG, Sand Made. Thorsten Rudolph, CEO, Anwendungszentrum Oberpfaffenhofen, said: “LASER World of PHOTonICS is the ideal platform for the first STARTUP WORLD. This is wher young companies can showcase their product innovations to a wide public and establish good contacts.”
With photonics to the car of the future
Photonics is revolutionizing automotive production: lasers cut car bodies, image processing ensures safe navigation within the traffic, laser headlights turn night into day. This was demonstrated by the new special show “Photonics Applications in the Automotive Industry”. Katja Stolle, Exhibition Director, ex-plains: “LASER World of PHOTonICS is the perfect meeting place for users and suppliers. Innovations here underpin technological leadership.”
Additive manufacturing for miracles of production and more …
Additive manufacturing is used in lightweight construction, dental technology and medicine: that was demonstrated by various exhibitors as well as by the special show “3DPrinting – Additive Manufacturing”. The two meter high and six meter wide letters “LIGHT” created by Fraunhofer ILT using generative manufacturing symbolized the importance of generative manufacturing processes for lightweight construction. The company Materialise created a stir with a prototype heart from a 3D printer.

Photonics affects all fields of endeavor
Internet, Smartphone, car, road traffic, aviation, food and beverages, medical operation, disease diagnosis: Photonics is intelligent, is part of our everyday lives and is transforming our world: “Photonics is fascinating and has truly become a game-changer in industry and society” says Wolfgang Boch of the European Commission. Yanne Chembo of the African Physical Society is in no doubt: “We are the storytellers of light.”

Gathering of the elite at the World of Photonics Congress
The International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies declared by UNESCO was a golden thread running not just through the trade fair but also through the World of Photonics Congress in the International Congress Center Munich (ICM).
The Munich event is also very important for Nobel Prize winners: “Trade fairs such as this are very important because they provide the pieces of the puzzle for the next point and steps in my career”, says Dr. Eric Betzig, Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2014. A further three Nobel Prize winners delivered lectures: Prof. Stefan Hell, Prof. Serge Haroche and Prof. Theodor Hänsch.
That again made the World of Photonics Congress, with eight scientific conferences, more than 2,700 lectures and approximately 3,500 participants, an important meeting place for the international scientific elite.

Top marks from visitors and exhibitors
The results of the poll by market research institute TNS Infratest testify to the excellent atmosphere: 97 per cent of visitors find the trade fair “excellent to good” and will very probably return. 94 per cent of exhibitors find the trade fair “excellent to good” and 97 per cent will very probably take part again.

Photonics industry has momentum
The outlook is good for the next LASER World of PHOTONICS, from June 26–29, 2017. According to a recent study by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and trade associations SPECTARIS, VDMA and ZVEI the global turnover of the Photonics industry in 2014 was around 350 billion euros. It is due to hit 615 billion euros by 2020.