26 January 2011

Opnext launches 60mW 445nm blue laser for embedded device mini projector applications

At this week’s Photonics West 2011 conference in San Francisco (25–27 January), optical module and component maker Opnext Inc of Fremont, NJ, USA, which offers a family of high-power, low-operating-current red and infrared laser diodes, has launched a high-power (60mW) 445nm blue laser diode.

The first in a family of blue laser diodes being planned for development, the HL45023TG blue laser diode is designed for accessory or mobile pico projector applications as well as embedded device applications where a pico projector image capability is envisioned to be integrated into a mobile phone.

Using a unique and proprietary design, the HL45023TG provides 60mW of optical output power at a 445nm wavelength and consumes 30% less power than existing, commercially available blue lasers, it is claimed. The laser comes in a small 3.8mm package, suiting the growing market demand in embedded and mobile device applications. In addition, it has a small aspect ratio of 2.1, close to the same aspect ratio as the red, high-power laser diode that Opnext currently provides for pico projector applications. With the introduction of the blue laser, pico projector module manufacturers can now improve their RGB module by using both the red and blue laser diodes, the firm says.

“With the addition of a blue laser diode to our product portfolio, we anticipate manufacturers will be pleased with the power and image quality results they can deliver from their system,” says Tadayuki Kanno, president of Opnext’s devices business unit. “Opnext’s focus continues to be on the development of diodes that are high power, high quality and high performance while consuming less energy.”

Market research firm In-Stat forecasts that the market for pico projectors will reach 20 million units in 2014, driven mainly by tiny projectors embedded in mobile handsets, personal media players, cameras and camcorders (‘Pico Projectors: One Reason Bigger Isn’t Better’, May 2010).

“Opnext is one of the key red laser diode suppliers for our Light Touch product, and they have consistently delivered on the quality we need,” comments Chris Harris, CEO of projection system maker Light Blue Optics of Cambridge, UK. “The introduction of Opnext’s high-power blue laser is an important step in our roadmap towards embedded projection systems that deliver improved image quality and three times the brightness of a typical tablet screen using only half the power,” he adds.

With more than 30 years of laser heritage, Opnext offers a broad spectrum of laser diode products that now span 404–850nm.

The HL45023TG will be shipping in sample quantities in February and is scheduled to be in mass production in April.

Tags: Blue laser Mini projector Opnext

Visit: www.opnext.com

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